by Elizabeth Hefner, Development Team

The Wetlands Institute is pleased to announce it has awarded the first fellowship in the Jeannie Morris Graduate Fellowship Program for Coastal Conservation and Research. Our first fellowship recipient is Garret Maggio, a Ph.D. student in the Biology, Biomedicine, and Chemistry Program at East Carolina University.

Jeannie & Jim Morris

“The launch of the Jeannie Morris Fellowship Program stands out as a significant milestone in our capacity to advance core research and conservation objectives and support students and early career professionals entering the field. We are excited to work with Garrett and future Fellows through the program,” says Dr. Lisa Ferguson, Director of Research and Conservation at The Wetlands Institute.

The Fellowship supports academic training and development and diversifies and expands research endeavors focused on wetlands and coastal ecosystems. It was made possible by a generous donation from Jim and Jeannie Morris. “We are pleased to support the research aspect of TWI’s mission by endowing a yearly research fellowship for graduate students,” says Jeannie.

Garret will use this $10,000 fellowship to investigate the population structure of the diamondback terrapin, a species central to the work of TWI. Terrapins live exclusively in tidal wetlands and can be quite difficult to find, capture, and survey. Through this work Garrett, hopes to provide a new tool to help researchers learn more about terrapin movements and dispersal, and inform future research and conservation efforts for the species.