Four students win NOAA scholarships
The Western Front
March 2, 2015
Four Western students were awarded $22,500 from both academic aid and paid internships at top scientific research facilities for 2015.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association’s (NOAA) awards the Ernest F. Hollings Undergraduate Scholarship Program annually to approximately 100 students from all over the country.
“I saw the first line that said ‘we are excited to inform you’ and I just started grinning like an idiot,” he said.
Woodrich is a junior studying biology with a marine emphasis. This summer he will complete a paid internship at the Northeastern Fisheries Science Center in Wood’s Hole, Massachusetts.
He will be working on the development of a device that acoustically tracks whales.
The device will be used to track the North Atlantic Right Whale, which is one of the most endangered whales in the world, with only about 400 remaining.
“Specifically what I’ll be doing is evaluating the validity of the detector,” he said.
Woodrich will be helping with the development of an automator for these devices in order to gather data more quickly, he said.
One thing Woodrich can do with his studies is be able to tell where certain whale species are and what they’re doing, he said.
“Doing marine mammal work is a dream for a lot of people,” Woodrich said. “It feels really good, it feels like I’m really doing something.”
Woodrich knew he wanted to study marine biology after he attended Western’s Marine Science Scholar program at Shannon Point Marine Center. The program is for out-of-state students, and is a two-week immersive program that students enroll in the September before the start of their freshman year….