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PEP student at work on her research project. Credit: PEP/NOAA

Students tour the R/V Hugh Sharp and learn about the NOAA HabCam from NEFSC's Vic Nordahl during a port call between summer sea scallop surveys. Credit: Shelley Dawicki, NEFSC/ NOAA

PEP Class of 2015. Credit: Shelley Dawicki, NEFSC/NOAA
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January 11, 2016
Contact: Shelley Dawicki
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Summer Science Internship Program Aimed at Diversity Offered in Woods Hole

The Partnership Education Program (PEP), a project supported by six science institutions in Woods Hole, Mass., is seeking applicants for a 10-week summer program that combines undergraduate course work with research in marine and environmental science.

Launched in 2009, PEP is designed to promote a diverse scientific community by recruiting talent from minority groups that are under-represented in marine and environmental sciences.

PEP completed its seventh summer in 2015, hosting 16 students from 15 different colleges or universities. Eleven of the colleges or universities were new to the program, bringing the total to 67 colleges or universities, including 23 Historically Black Colleges and Universities and/or Minority Serving Institutions, and more than 100 students who have participated in PEP since 2009.

The Partner Education Program is designed for college students, with priority given to entering juniors and seniors, majoring in the natural sciences (biology, chemistry, physics and mathematics, engineering, or geosciences and earth system sciences) who have had some course work in oceanography, biology, or marine and/or environmental science. The program includes a four-week course and research internships lasting six to ten weeks. PEP students also participate in seminars, workshops, field trips, at-sea experiences, career development activities, and attend lectures at participating science institutions throughout the summer.

The 2016 PEP program will run June 3 through August 13. The PEP course, “Ocean and Environmental Sciences: Global Climate Change," is offered for credit through the University of Maryland Eastern Shore and runs from June 6 to July 1. The course is taught in Woods Hole by research scientists from local science institutions. PEP students will conduct research projects that employ some of the techniques and explore some of the issues presented in the course. At the end of the program in mid-August, the students will present results from their research in a 20-minute public presentation during a one-day PEP seminar.

The 2016 program will cover tuition and room and board, as well as provide a travel allowance and a stipend. Students who apply on or before February 19 will have priority for admissions and financial support. The 2016 PEP Class will be announced by March 18.

Application information and reports on previous programs are available on the Woods Hole PEP website (

PEP welcomes applications from students of all backgrounds. Students from groups under-represented in marine and environmental sciences are especially encouraged to apply – this includes African American, Hispanic American, Native American, Asian Pacific Island, and Alaska Native students.

PEP is a project of the Woods Hole Diversity Initiative. Participating institutions are: NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Marine Biological Laboratory, Sea Education Association, U. S. Geological Survey, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, and Woods Hole Research Center. The Woods Hole Diversity Initiative's primary academic partner is the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.

For further information, contact PEP Director Dr. Ambrose Jearld, Jr. at NOAA Fisheries Service ( or 508-495-2318) or Dr. Paulinus Chigbu at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore ( or 410-621-3034).

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