Newsletter of the SEAS Islands Alliance 
January 2022

Alliance Happenings: Opportunities to Connect in 2022 

Happy New Year SEAS Islands Alliance! We are planning lots of online activities in 2022 that we hope will be great opportunities for SEAS participants and alumni to connect and get to know each other. Here's what we're planning:

The 2nd annual SEAS Virtual Summit will be Mon March 28 5:30pm-7:30pm AST (Tues March 29 7:30am-9:30am ChST) and Thurs March 31 7:30am-9:30am AST (Thurs March 31 9:30pm-11:30pm ChST). The Summit will be an opportunity for current and alumni participants to connect across island hubs, practice networking skills, learn more about career pathways, and more. Use these links to register:
We are also planning monthly activities and are looking for leaders (both current students and alumni)! Please take a look at the schedule of activities and consider signing up to help lead one of them. See this spreadsheet for the schedule and leadership opportunities.
SEAS Spotlight: Delsabriana Gonzalez
The USVI Hub is proud to announce their new Workforce Fellow, Delsabriana Gonzalez.  Delsa, originally from Miami, FL is the new Coral Restoration Practitioner for The Nature Conservancy (TNC) through the SEAS Islands Alliance Workforce Fellowship. Delsa received her Master’s in marine conservation from the University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Atmospheric Science. Through her work with TNC, Delsa will be aiding in the efforts to restore and conserve coral reefs by working at TNC’s coral nurseries, out-planting coral colonies, and monitoring the  reefs of St. Croix.
Alumni Spotlight: Kaylin Wallen
Kaylin Wallen, former Youth Ocean Explorers (YOE) student participant from the USVI Hub wrote, “I just wanted to say a huge thank you! I’m in school now, and although it’s a new environment, I can’t begin to express all of the thanks I have for you, The Youth Ocean Explorers, and the [VI] EPSCOR team. The majority of what I do here in school I have already been exposed through your programs. Last week for the lab, we did a stream/ creek assessment similar to what we’ve done in the lagoons, catching organisms in mesh nets then observing and classifying them. Even in my work-study as a student lab assistant, I help preset labs getting even more familiar with a lab environment, something I have already been introduced to and have gotten comfortable with through YOE and the Coral World internship.  In many of my labs, I have already done similar activities. I genuinely feel prepared and set up for success here at Hollins University. I genuinely appreciate it. I just wanted to say thank you!”

Making Waves

Congratulations to USVI Hub graduate student Lila Uzzell who was recently awarded the Noble Samuel Scholarship! This scholarship was offered by the Friends of Virgin Islands National Park and Lila is one of the first recipients to receive it ($5,000). Lila also received the Ruby Rutnik Scholarship Fund earlier this year in June, $2,500, to assist in advancing her goals for higher education.

Congratulations to USVI Hub Workforce Fellow, Zola Roper, who has a new role as the territory’s new Marine Debris Coordinator beginning in January!  

USVI Hub SEAS student participant, Samuel Gittens Jr., has accepted the position as Coral Disease Treatment Specialist Level I at the University of the Virgin Islands within the Center for Marine and Environmental Studies on St. Thomas. 

Check out the awesome video that YOE student Portia Miles made, highlighting some of the amazing ecosystems found in the USVI, using information she gathered through YOE and other programs. Portia also assisted Akacia Halliday (Bridge Program 2017) with collecting samples over the holiday break. 

All 5 of the 2021 Guam Hub undergraduate Fellows (Gabriella Prelosky, Britney Sison, Anela Duenas, Daniel Mabagos, and Anna Aguirre) presented at both the SACNAS and CERF conferences. Gabby and Britney were each recognized with the “CERF 2021 Best Undergraduate Poster Award” for their research on diatom species in the Marianas.

A new cohort of 6 Guam undergraduates start their year-long research experience January 2022! Welcome Khazmyne Kawamoto and Caleb Laserna (with faculty mentor, Dr. Lobban), Rebecca Salas (with mentor, Dr. Bentlage), Alyssa Calalo (with faculty mentor, Dr. Demeulenaere), John Sacayan (with faculty mentor, Dr. Patil), and Raianne Quichocho (with Dr. Schils)!

Featured Opportunities
Between January 15th and February 1st, 2022, the Shared Service Centers, in collaboration with the Office of Human Resources, are hosting nation-wide hiring outreach events for Native and/or Indigenous Students and Recent Graduates; Black and/or African-American Students and Recent Graduates; Latine and/or Hispanic Students or Recent Graduates; and Asian-American and/or Pacific Islander Students and Recent Graduates. See here more information: 

Woods Hole PEP program Deadline February 11:

Cal State Monterey Bay REU February 14:

Maryland Sea Grant REU February 15:

C-Stream Internships in Chesapeake Bay February 22:

On The Horizon

March 28-31 - SEAS Virtual Summit
The SEAS Islands Alliance is an NSF INCLUDES Alliance funded by the National Science Foundation Inclusion across the Nation of Communities of Learners of Underrepresented Discoverers in Engineering and Science (NSF INCLUDES). 

Visit our website at for more information. Please reply to this email if you have any questions, if you are interested in getting more involved with the SEAS Islands Alliance, have information you'd like to share in an upcoming newsletter, or If you would like to be removed from the email list.

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SEAS Islands Alliance · 2 John Brewers Bay · St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands 00802-6004 · Virgin Islands (U.S.)

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