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MLML Graduate Awarded the Dr. Nancy Foster Scholarship

June 19, 2013

Category: A Closer Look

Michael Fox studying the effects of disturbances on kelp and their associated communities during his lab at the MLML.

Michael Fox, who recently completed his M.S. at Moss Landing Marine Laboratories, is one of three recipients of the 2013 Dr. Nancy Foster Scholarship. The scholarship, which is awarded annually to only three to four scholars from across the country, provides financial support to encourage independent graduate-level research in oceanography, marine biology, or maritime archaeology.

At the Moss Landing Marine Laboratories, Fox studied the recovery from disturbance in giant kelp. He is now pursuing a Ph.D. in marine biology at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. The scholarship will be used to support his dissertation of how nutrient pollution affects the dominant processes structuring competitive interactions between reef-building corals and macroalgae.

Fox will be awarded up to $30,000– $42,000 for four years and $10,000 for research collaboration opportunities at a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) facility. He will be working within the Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary on Maui, HI, the Pacific Remote Islands National Marine Monument, and the Line Islands. His research aims to connect wastewater effluent to declines in live coral cover on Maui and to determine if the processes structuring coral-algal competition are consistent across a gradient of degraded to near-pristine reef systems. This project will provide a holistic perspective and key missing information about how coral reefs become algal dominated in the presence of local human impacts, helping to improve critical management strategies in Hawaii and beyond.

Fox will be the sixth student from a CSU campus to receive this scholarship. To learn more about the Dr. Nancy Foster Scholarship or past recipients, visit


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