LOCK HAVEN, Pa. - Lock Haven University is a member of the Pennsylvania State
System of Higher Education (PASSHE), the largest provider of higher education in
the commonwealth. Its 14 universities offer more than 250 degree and certificate
programs in more than 120 areas of study. Nearly 405,000 system alumni live and
work in Pennsylvania.
Lock Haven University sophomore Christopher W. Smyth has been selected to receive the prestigious Hollings Scholarship from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
Smyth is Biology major with a specialization in Marine Biology. He is minoring in Environmental Studies.
The Ernest F. Hollings Undergraduate Scholarship provides up to $16,000 in tuition over the next two academic years and a summer internship in marine biology during the summer of 2012 for another $6,500. The 10-week internship between the first and second years of the award takes place at a NOAA facility and provides hands-on/practical educational training experience in NOAA-related science, research, technology, policy, management, and education activities.
In addition to receiving the Hollings Scholarship, Smyth has been selected to receive the Department of Biology's Marine Biology scholarship for the summer of 2011. This scholarship will pay Smyth’s summer tuition at the Marine Science Consortium at Wallops Island, Va.
According to Dr. Kenneth W. Thompson, Professor of Biological Sciences and a member of the Academic Advisory Board of the Marine Science Consortium, “Chris is an outstanding student and campus leader. He is active in the Honors Program and was co-founder of the Marine Science Club that has become one of the largest such groups on campus.”
Smyth presented a paper/poster for the North East Regional Honors Conference in Portland, Maine, March 31-April 3. His presentation focused on the use of DNA techniques as a conservation and research tool in fisheries and ichthyology.
When he graduates from Lock Haven University, Smyth plans to attend graduate school to earn a master’s degree in Marine Biology. He hopes to serve in the Peace Corps, after which he will return to graduate school to earn a Ph.D. His long-range goal is to do independent research internationally.
Dr. David L. White, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, expressed his pride in Smyth’s achievements. “He is to be commended for the work and dedication that have led to these awards and honors. He is an outstanding representative of Lock Haven University, and he clearly has a bright future ahead of him.”
LHU students majoring in biology/marine biology track prepare for a career in marine biology through classroom study, laboratory research and extensive hands-on experiences in marine environments. LHU is a member of the Wallops Island Marine Science Consortium which operates the Marine Science Center on the Delmarva Peninsula in Virginia. This location provides ready access to wetlands and barrier islands as well as inshore and offshore ocean habitats. In this track, students are required to spend three summer sessions (three weeks each - nine semester hours) at the Wallops Island facility where they collect data and perform research on a diverse variety of aquatic life. They use ocean-going research boats to reach points of study and to collect samples. Other resources near Wallops Island for student use include Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge and the Assateague National Seashore.