The Blundy Family Marine Science Fellowship

The California Ocean Alliance is committed to promoting opportunity and diversity in the field of marine mammal conservation and education. To increase student participation across a broad range of backgrounds, we are excited to announce The Blundy Family Marine Science Fellowship, a highly competitive academic opportunity that pairs recent college graduates with researchers and educational experts at UC Santa Cruz, Moss Landing Marine Laboratory, and Stanford’s Hopkins Marine Station. This paid research opportunity is designed for under-represented minority undergraduates from across the country. This 12-week paid fellowship emphasizes training, mentoring, research, and preparing students for graduate studies & careers marine mammal science. Students will be paired with a science/educator mentor and will have the opportunity to participate in one of the following areas (depending on interest and availability):

  • Field work
  • Laboratory work
  • Data analysis
  • Science curriculum development
  • Social media/outreach

The stipend provided will cover the cost of living in the Monterey Bay Area for the duration of the 3-month program. The approximate terms for this fellowship are:

  • Each year, 1-2 applicants will be selected to work during the spring, summer, fall or winter. Fellowships are awarded based on availability, mentor or project needs, and student interest. Available positions will be posted on the website, social media, and newsletter.


Current and Former Blundy Fellows

Maddi Stewart

Maddi is currently entering her third year as a marine biology major at UC Santa Cruz. Maddi’s fellowship was in the Bio-Telemetry and Behavioral Ecology Laboratory with Dr. Ari Friedlaender. Maddi worked closely with Dr. Logan Pallin to help process tissue samples that will be used to analyze genetic and hormonal data about Humpback whales. About the fellowship, Maddi says: “Being in Ari’s lab has helped me further my lab techniques, become more confident in my skills, and understand the value of cultivating strong relationships within the science community.” Maddi will be continuing her work in the lab this fall 2023.

Jennifer Valenzuela

Jen has always been interested in marine science and visual communication. After taking COA’s Marine Mammal Online Experience, Jen wanted to expand her knowledge about aerial surveys and geospatial analysis. During her fellowship, she was also finishing dual certifications in Geospatial Technology and Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS). Jen’s fellowship was with Dr. David Cade at Standford’s Hopkins Marine Station where she worked on mapping Antarctic Minke whale data and helped create illustrations for scientific publications. About the fellowship, Jen says: “Having taken a non-linear path towards my career goals, getting this kind of experience is invaluable”.

The Fall fellowship application period is currently closed. Please join our mailing list and follow us on Instagram to learn when the Winter application period will open.

Specific project details will be provided during the interview process.

To apply, please complete the following application and arrange to have a letter of recommendation sent directly to the following email: [email protected]

This letter should be written by an instructor, employer, mentor, or someone who can speak knowledgeably about your career goals, interests, work ethic and/or relevant skills.

Please send both your application and letter of recommendation directly to [email protected].

You are welcome to email [email protected] if you have any questions!