University of Alaska Fairbanks student Genoa Sullaway is one of eight graduate students announced as a 2022 National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS)-Sea Grant Joint Fellowship recipient. The NMFS-Sea Grant Joint Fellowship program provides support for future fisheries scientists.
Fellows work with two mentors during their fellowship year, one from the fellow’s university and one from NOAA Fisheries. Genoa will work with Dr. Lauren Rogers at the NMFS Alaska Fisheries Science Center in Seattle and Dr. Curry Cunningham at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Sullaway’s PhD research focuses on understanding marine processes affecting Western Alaskan Chinook salmon productivity.
Western Alaska Chinook salmon are important to the subsistence culture and food security of indigenous peoples in the region, yet fish abundance has been declining for over a decade. Sullaway’s research to better understand survival rates for these declining populations will help inform local, state, and federal management for subsistence fisheries and bycatch limits in groundfish fisheries.
As part of her fellowship, Sullaway will participate in a yearly NMFS-Sea Grant Fellowship Research Symposium, which this year will take place concurrently with the annual American Fisheries Society meeting in Spokane, Washington. At the symposium the fellows have a chance to network, present their research, attend professional development workshops and learn about job opportunities.
Genoa said, “My ultimate career goal is to be a research scientist for NMFS and conduct research that informs ecosystem-based fisheries management (EBFM) in the rapidly changing Northern Pacific Ocean ecosystem.” Alumni of this fellowship typically find careers with NOAA Fisheries, fishery management councils, and other agencies or academics related to fisheries. The NMFS-Sea Grant fellowship directly addresses the need for career development opportunities in this specialized field.
“The NMFS-Sea Grant Fellowship Program gives fellows the chance to contribute to current sustainable fisheries management challenges while advancing their scientific and technical skills,” said Ginny Eckert, Alaska Sea Grant director. “The fellowship attracts highly qualified students from across the United States and we are excited to see a University of Alaska student selected through this competitive process.”
Eligible applicants are working towards a Ph.D. in population dynamics, ecosystem dynamics, resource or environmental economics, or a related field such as wildlife biology, fishery biology, natural resource management, marine biology, quantitative ecology, applied mathematics, applied statistics, or simulation modeling. Fellowships are awarded in one of two fields of study–marine resource economics or population and ecosystem dynamics. Applications for 2023 will be released this fall.