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MBL awards journalism fellowships

Sixteen science writers and editors have been awarded prestigious Science Journalism Fellowships from the MBL (Marine Biological Laboratory), an internationally known biomedical and environmental research and educational center located in the village of Woods Hole, Massachusetts on Cape Cod.

Now in its 23rd year, the MBL's Science Journalism Program allows established science journalists from around the globe to "step into the shoes of the scientists they cover" by immersing themselves in the process of basic biomedical and environmental research.

The fellowship program offers two hands-on courses. The biomedical course provides journalists hands-on science training in Woods Hole during the MBL's famed summer research season, when hundreds of biologists gather at the institution from around the world to conduct research and to teach and learn advanced-level science and research techniques. The polar course gives journalists the unparalled opportunity to travel to MBL field stations in Alaska and Antarctica to be a part of some of today's most cutting-edge ecological research.

This year's MBL Science Journalism Fellows are:

Biomedical Fellows

Marie Alpman, Ny Teknik
Jeffrey Evans, International Medical News Group
Sam Kean, Science & Spirit
Kathiann Kowalski, Freelance
Lisa Jarvis, Chemical & Engineering News
Emily Stone, Freelance

Polar Fellows

Alan Burdick*, Author & Freelance Writer
Scott Canon*, National Correspondent, The Kansas City Star
Nancy Cohen, Environmental Reporter, WNPR
Carrie Peyton Dahlberg, Senior Writer, Sacramento Bee
Christine Dell'Amore, Editor, National Geographic News
Leslie Dodson, Freelance Science Correspondent, NBC WeatherPlus
Marilia Melo Juste Dini, Reporter, G1/
Richard Morgan, Freelance
Jason Orfanon*, Producer, National Geographic Television
Wade Rawlins, Environmental Reporter, The News & Observer

*also selected for additional month at Palmer Station, Antarctica

During their residencies, fellows will learn what science is like from the inside out. In early June, biomedical fellows will participate a hands-on laboratory course that will explore techniques used in biomedical researchsequencing DNA, cloning, and PCR (polymerase chain reaction), for example.

Journalists selected for the MBL's new Polar Fellowship, created in conjunction with the International Polar Year, will travel to the foothills of Alaska's Brooks Range, site of an MBL field site at Toolik Lake. There they will participate in a weeklong hands-on course focusing on key science questions in polar research. Following the course, the journalists will team up with research scientists to work side-by-side with them in the field and laboratory. This winter, three Polar Fellows will spend an additional month with scientists studying the effects of climate change and ecosystem function at Palmer Station on the Antarctic Peninsula. The experience provides an unmatched opportunity to experience, compare, and contrast polar change and research conducted at both poles.

To date, the Science Journalism Program has granted fellowships to more than 250 journalists from a wide range of news organizations, including The New York Times, Science, National Public Radio, The Washington Post, CNN, and Scientific American. It is also gaining cachet with journalists overseas, and includes alumni from such far-reaching places as Africa, Brazil, Sweden, India, Japan, and the United Kingdom.

MBL visiting investigator and Northwestern University professor Dr. Robert D. Goldman, and Knight Science Journalism Program director and former Washington Post science editor, Boyce Rensberger, direct the Science Journalism Program. The Biomedical Hands-On Laboratory course is directed by Dr. Kerry Bloom of the University of North Carolina and the Polar Hands-On Laboratory course is directed by Dr. Christopher Neill, of the MBL's Ecosystems Center.


Contact: Gina Hebert
Marine Biological Laboratory

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