M.S. & Ph.D. Research and Funding Opportunities

Some of the research and funding opportunities for Fall 2022 applicants are highlighted below. Clicking on the topic of interest will give you additional details and a link to the sponsoring faculty member. If you don't see an opportunity below, it just means that you will need to contact individual VIMS faculty directly to learn about opportunities in their research group.  Tip: When contacting faculty, it helps if you provide a succinct overview of your qualifications and interests and state clearly why you are interested in a particular faculty member's program.

Evaluating production constraints and consumer demand in an emerging blue catfish fishery

Blue catfish is an invasive species of growing management concern found in fresh and estuarine waters in the Chesapeake Bay. A small commercial fishery has developed over the last two decades, yet the resource is considered underexploited. This project will use surveys of fishers and seafood consumers, focus groups with post-harvest industry members, and econometric data analyses to quantitatively evaluate factors constraining development of a successful commercial fishery for this harmful invasive species. Research will involve collaboration and consultation with a diverse group of stakeholders including: commercial and recreational fishers, fish processors and dealers, seafood consumers, and fishery managers. 

The ideal candidate should have experience with statistics and quantitative data analysis, strong written communication skills, and an interest in fisheries management. Prospective M.S. and Ph.D. students are encouraged to apply.

Contact: Dr. Andrew Scheld directly with your interest and inquiries.

Observational study of mesoscale and submesoscale dynamics in the Western and North Atlantic

Dr. Donglai Gong is seeking one or two M.S. or Ph.D. students to join the Coastal & Polar Physical Oceanography lab. The student(s) will be directly involved in two projects that will utilize underwater gliders to study mesoscale and submesoscale ocean dynamics and their impact on ocean acoustics in the Western Atlantic and in the North Atlantic. The first study focuses on a 100km x 100km region over a seamount along the path of the Gulf Stream. Working with other project partners, a fleet of gliders will be deployed for a period of up to a month to collect physical oceanographic and acoustic data. The second study will be in the Nordic Seas between Iceland and Norway. We will be deploying a single glider with current profiler and turbulence sensors to study upper ocean submesoscale dynamics. This is part of a larger team that will investigate the impact of energetic atmospheric events and oceanic fronts on upper ocean acoustic propagation. The student(s) will be involved in fieldwork, data processing, data analysis, and publications.

The ideal candidate should have a strong background in math, physics, engineering and/or data science. The candidate will be expected to work/communicate effectively and professionally as part of a larger team and go to sea to conduct fieldwork. The student should have a strong interest in pursuing a career in physical oceanography. Prospective M.S. and Ph.D. students are encouraged to apply.

Contact: Dr. Donglai Gong directly with your interest and inquiries. 

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Contact Information and Mailing Address for Application Materials
Office of Academic Studies - Admissions
Gloucester Point, VA 23062  USA
e-mail: Office of Academic Studies - Admissions
Telephone: (804) 684-7105
Fax: (804) 684-7881