SAINT AUGUSTINE — Three Flagler students have earned coveted internships at major research institutions this summer, thanks to National Science Foundation’s Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program. Coastal Environmental Science majors Cody Burns, Madeline Musante and Alexis Morris will be heading to Oregon and Virginia for their highly-competitive research experiences.
“This is the pinnacle of all internships,” said Dr. Terri Seron, chair of the Natural Sciences Department.
The REU program funds opportunities for undergraduates, who work in research programs of the host institution. Students are associated with a specific research project, where they work closely with the faculty and other researchers. Students are granted stipends and, in many cases, assistance with housing and travel.
Burns will be traveling to Old Dominion University, where he will investigate the impacts of climate change on urban communities. Musante will be interning at the Hatfield Marine Science Center at Oregon State University, where she will work on a collaborative project between the Lab and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to study the early development of rockfish off the coast of the state. Morris will also travel to Oregon State, where she will study the effects of anthropogenic activities on marine communities found in underwater sediments.
Musante was thrilled to learn she secured an internship: “It’s the perfect fit for me because it builds on the knowledge and experience I have gained at Flagler,” she said.
Flagler alumni Kyle Jennette was awarded the prestigious internship in 2010, and Kassi Ferguson and Daphne Pariser in 2012; all students have since entered doctoral programs. Jennette is working on his doctorate at the University of Wisconsin (Milwaukee), Ferguson at Florida State University and Pariser at New York University.
“This demonstrates how important undergraduate research here at Flagler really is, and how much work and time our Science faculty and students are putting in outside of regular classes,” Seron said. “I am so proud of the way research has grown here at Flagler.”