Welcome Dr. Alan Verde, May Scientist in Residency!

News at the Sitka Sound Science Center | May, 02, 2017 | by 0 Comments

Join the Sitka Sound Science Center staff and Board in welcoming Dr. Alan Verde as our next Scientist in Residency Fellow, here from May 2 to May 30, 2017. Dr. Verde is a Professor of Marine Biology in the Corning School of Ocean Studies at Maine Maritime Academy (MMA) in Castine, MA. He also serves as the Diving Safety Officer for MMA, in which role he oversees all aspects of the academy’s scientific diving program.

Alan grew up in the Philippines, received his Bachelor’s and Master’s of Science at Walla Walla University, his Ph.D. at Florida Institute of Technology, and held a post-doctoral research position at Oregon State University. His current research interests revolve around the physiological ecology of subarctic sea anemones, sea cucumbers, and octopus. During his Fellowship in Sitka, Alan plans to both write about and conduct research on an anemone found in our local waters: Anthropleura elegantissima, also known as the aggregating or clonal anemone.

Sitkans can hear Alan describe his interest in researching the anemones of Sitka Sound on the Raven Radio morning interview on May 5th at 8:10am. Alan will then expand upon his research in a Natural History seminar entitled “To Be (Green) or Not to Be (Brown): Anemones and Shakespearean drama in the intertidal zone of the Pacific” on May 11th, 7:30pm UAS room 229. Alan will also be the star presenter of an anemone-focused “Behind the Scenes” after-hours program open to all adults at the Sitka Sound Science Center on May 10th from 5:30-7pm. For younger folks interested in exploring the wave-shocked shoreline, Alan will be leading a trip to the rocky outer coast on May 27 for high school students willing to help him collect samples for his research. Lastly, Alan will accompany 1st grade students from Baranof Elementary into the intertidal from May 9 through 11 to explore the many animals that call this environment home.

The Sitka Sound Science Center, through funding from the National Science Foundation is once again hosting Scientist in Residency Fellowships (SIRF) here at our Center. The SIRF program brings preeminent scientists from across the country to Sitka for month long sabbaticals, allowing for undisturbed research free from the interruptions of their daily routine. The program provides scientists the opportunity to engage our town in science, sharing their research and career pathways, while also benefiting from the important local knowledge of residents. For more information or to schedule a SIRF event please contact Lauren Bell, SIRF Director, 907.747.8878 ext. 9