The winner of the Student Spotlight Competition was AlexisBergman from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. Her talk was about "Cultivation of white worms Enchytraeus albidus using low- or no-cost feed resources." Alexis is currently working on aMaster's degree under the direction of Drs. Jesse Trushenski and Michael Schwarz that focuses on optimization of rearing techniquesfor clownfish and similar marine ornamentals with live diets anddiet enrichment.
Second place was awarded to Melissa Pierce, a Ph.D. student inOceanography at the University of Connecticut, for her presentation titled, "The blue mussel and the eastern oyster: A tale of two gutmicrobiomes." Melissa's research, with advisor Dr. Evan Ward, iscentered on the dynamic interactions between microbial communitiesand commercially important bivalves.
Third place in the Student Spotlight Competition went toChristopher Mealey for his presentation titled "Assessing the geneticimpacts of stock enhancement of red drum Sciaenops ocellatus on the wild population in South Carolina using estimates of geneticdiversity." Christopher is working on a Master's degree in MarineBiology at the College of Charleston under the direction of Dr.Michael Denson.