Students Present Environmental Science Research Results at MBL Student Symposium, December 14

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MBL, WOODS HOLE, MA—The public is invited to attend a symposium featuring the research results of 17 undergraduate students who have spent the last 10 weeks participating in the Marine Biological Laboratory’s (MBL’s) Semester in Environmental Sciences (SES) program. The symposium will be held from 8:20 AM to 3:00 PM on Friday, December 14 in the MBL’s Lillie Auditorium, 7 MBL Street, Woods Hole and will feature 15-minute presentations of research projects that range from a examination of the effects of wastewater plumes in West Falmouth Harbor, to plastic marine debris in coastal waters, to the effects of human management on urbanized lawns.

Now in its sixteenth year, the SES program is designed to immerse undergraduate science students in an intensive semester of hands-on ecological science using a curriculum that approaches environmental science from an ecosystems perspective.  It is sponsored by the MBL’s Ecosystems Center.

Students conduct research in local sites on Cape Cod such as freshwater ponds, brackish estuaries, and a forest irrigated with wastewater effluent from our municipal sewage treatment plant, but the problems addressed during the semester are by no means local; they include impacts of land use change, disruption of the global nitrogen cycle, climate change, fossil fuel emissions and carbon cycling, deforestation and over exploitation of fisheries.

In addition to taking courses in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems science, the students have participated in a science-writing seminar designed to illustrate how the results of scientific investigations can be transmitted to the public.


The Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) is dedicated to scientific discovery and improving the human condition through research and education in biology, biomedicine, and environmental science. Founded in 1888 in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, the MBL is an independent, nonprofit corporation.