ROBERT MURPHY – Ph.D. STUDENT
Robert Murphy graduated from Northeastern University with a B.S. in Marine Biology in 2012. During his undergraduate career, Robert worked in the Grabowski lab studying the diet of the recreationally important striped bass (Morone saxatilis). His Ph.D. research aims to further examine the potential relationship between striped bass and their dominant prey items, specifically in the Gulf of Maine. Specifically, his research will focus on understanding the intricacies behind striped bass prey selectivity and potential physiological and ecological implications of prey selection. Further research will target striped bass management along with the socio-economic consequences of policy reform. Survey work aims to identify the perceptions and local ecological knowledge of striped bass fishers in New England.
Marissa’s research interests focus on how trophic interactions impact population dynamics and community structure. More specifically, she is interested in predator-prey interactions and how indirect effects of predators influence prey behavior. Marissa’s graduate research at the University of Maine utilized acoustic telemetry to track fine-scale movement behavior of the American lobster (Homarus americanus) in the presence and absence of predators. Marissa plans to continue studying how behavioral responses to predation influence ecosystems.
B.S. Biology – University of Southern Maine
M.S. Marine Biology – University of Maine
CHRISTOPHER BAILLIE -PH.D. STUDENT
Chris Baillie received his B.S. in Biology with a minor in Marine Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2010. After completing his undergraduate, Chris worked with Dr. Joel Fodrie at the University of North Carolina as a technician working on fisheries ecology in seagrass and oyster reef systems. Broadly, his interests include marine community ecology and conservation. More specifically, he is interested in connectivity of marine ecosystems and populations, complex trophic interactions, impacts of anthropogenic modifications to marine systems, and disease ecology. His current research is focused on Spiny Dogfish ecology and socioeconomics in the Gulf of Maine.
Chris Conroy is a second-year Ph.D. student who came to Northeastern from the University of Maryland’s Chesapeake Biological Laboratory, where he earned his M.S. in Environmental Science with Dr. David H. Secor in 2012. For his Masters work, Chris concentrated on the causes and consequences of partial migration in young-of-the-year striped bass Morone saxatilis. He is interested in how populations interact in marine environments and how they are affected by anthropogenic factors such as fishing and climate change. Chris is currently studying the role that intrapopulation diversity plays in the stability and resilience of Atlantic cod Gadus morhua populations and its importance to the management of this essential fishery.
Stephen Heck graduated from Middlebury College in 2010 with a B.A. in Biology. Since then, he has spent the warmer seasons working as a research technician on a bay scallop restoration project in Nantucket, MA. For the better part of each year he conducted background research for the Environmental Defense Fund on several fisheries conservation projects. Stephen is currently a Masters student through the Three Seas Program of Northeastern University. Fundamentally intrigued by the interconnectivity of everything, he is particularly interested in studying the effects that anthropogenic activities have on marine ecosystems and using research to understand how to best mitigate those impacts. Stephen will be researching the population dynamics of sea scallops in the Gulf of Maine during his time in the Grabowski lab