The Matt Beard Memorial Award
2018 - Ethan Cissell
Ethan Cissell, Ph.D. student, Biological Sciences (Advisor: Dr. Sophie McCoy) has been awarded the 2018 Matt Beard Memorial Award for Excellence in Research. The annual award is given to a student member of the FSU scientific diving community that best embodies the spirit of former FSU student Matt Beard, who was tragically killed by a drunk driver in 2007 before his project in coral conservation could be completed. Ethan's research focuses on the interactions between endolithic bacteria and crustose coralline algae especially nutrient exchanges between the endolithic community and the host coralline, impacts of nutrient exchange on host ecology, and bioerosion of the living host.
2017 - Abbey Engleman
Abbey Engleman has been awarded the 2017 Matt Beard Memorial Award for Excellence in Research. Abbey's research into the significance of texture in coral recruitment and the application in restoration efforts is something we are all excited about and is reflective of the great spirit of Matt's work. By combining characteristics that attract coral settlement with features known to enhance survival to recruitment, substrates can be designed to optimize the percent of larvae that recruit to a reef, improving restoration efforts and kick-starting ecosystem recovery. To read more about Abbey’s research https://fsumarinelab.wordpress.com/2017/08/14/can-3d-printed-corals-enhance-larval-recruitment-to-degraded-reefs/