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September Digest

Dear Lucy,

I am almost done with writing my proposal and I need to find a time to get my committee together for my proposal defense. I've heard that doodle polls are a good way to find a time that works with everyone, but I've never used one before. Can you give me some suggestions?

Proposal-writing Paul

Dear Paul,

A doodle poll is a great way to "herd the cats" of your committee for both your proposal or thesis defense. Doodle polls is free electronic way for participants to be involved in choosing a time to meet. To create a doodle poll, you'll need to create or login to your account on Doodle. Next, you'll need to include the name and location of the meeting, along with a note for the participants (such as any materials you expect them to bring, the reason for the meeting, etc.). Please email me at to reserve a room in SSMB for your defense. You can then add any questions that you like, such as time options. Your committee members are all busy professionals and they need to be given several time (and possibly day) options to choose from. I would recommend choosing hour time blocks during the workday to make it as easy as possible for your committee. Remember, you are trying to find a time that works for everyone, so providing times throughout the day may prove beneficial. You should also keep in mind time zone differences if some of your committee members are traveling. Good luck on your upcoming proposal defense! Make sure to bring your Proposal Approval Form and your Committee From if you have not already had those signed to your defense. These can both be found on the Current Students tab of our website under the forms tab.

Lucy Davis
MES Program Coordinator

If you're interested in talking to prospective students about the EVSS program, consider being listed as a mentor on the Ask a Current Student page on the website. Prospective students often have questions about grad school, our program, and other aspects of student life that can best be answered by current students in the program. To be added, provide a short bio and photo to Nicole ( 

*REMINDER: Our new program name is the Master of Environmental and Sustainability Studies Program and our new acronym is EVSS. In professional correspondence, please make sure you use the new program name and acronym. MESSA will maintain its current acronym, but its official name has changed to the Master of Environmental and Sustainability Studies Student Association. Our website will remain

Back-to-School Activities Offered Through CofC

Voter Registration Drive (Monday, September 2 9:30 am - 3:30 pm)
Addlestone Library

American Red Cross Blood Drive (Wednesday, September 25 10:00 am - 4:00 pm)
Stern Student Center Ballroom


Sea Grant Karl Havens Memorial South Atlantic Regional Research Competition

  • Deadline for proposals: October 25, 2019 (5:00 PM EST)
  • Research proposals with priority on quantifying the impacts of coastal flooding on access to public and private infrastructure and quantifying how blocked access during flooding affects the economy of coastal communities.
  • For more information, click here.

Changemaker Challenge 2019-20

  • College of Charleston's Sustainability Literacy Center is calling for project proposals (due Nov. 15) related to implementing a positive social or environmental change
  • Students will work in teams (1-5 students) with a mentor on any topic and any location, from campus to the rest of the world
  • $5,000 prize money will be split among the top four teams
  • More information can be found here

CofC Marine Research Student Colloquium

  • Date: Saturday, October 26, 2019
  • Location: Marine Resources Research Institute at the Fort Johnson campus
  • Deadline for abstracts: September 15, 2019 at midnight
  • EVSS students conducting research in marine biology are invited and encouraged to participate in the Colloquium, which will also feature all GPMB students
  • An award will be given for the best overall oral presentation and for the best poster
  • More information can be found here

Ashley Cooper Storm Ed Consortium Fall 2019 Meeting
  • September 18th from 8:30 am - Noon
  • Location: Zucker Family Graduate Education Center (1240 Supply Street, North Charleston, SC 29405)
  • Breakfast will be included
  • Summer edition of the ACSEC newsletter "Ripple Effect" can be seen here
Fort Johnson Seminar Series
  • All seminars take place on Fridays at 4:00 PM at the MRRI Auditorium at Fort Johnson (full schedule here)
  • September 6: Katherine Peter, NIST - "Toxic highways: Evaluating contaminants in Puget Sound stormwater"
  • September 13: Erik Sotka, College of Charleston - "Parallel evolution of tall- versus short-form ecotypes in Spartina alterniflora"
Charleston Green Drinks
  • If you've never been to Charleston Green Drinks, it's a great networking opportunity to meet with other like-minded people in the Charleston area. You'll get the chance to learn about different "green" organizations along and network with people from across Charleston. Meetings occur the third week of every month.
  • September 17 - Charleston Moves
  • Location: Baker & Brewer (94 Stuart Street)
  • Agenda:
    • 5:30 pm - Networking
    • 6:15 pm - Information Sharing
    • 6:30 pm - Networking
Marine Habitat Restoration - NOAA Restoration Center (Charleston, SC)
  • Specific duties include: restoration planning, fishery habitat restoration, content development, environmental compliance, and outreach
  • Requirements: 2 years specialized experience, including knowledge of biological sciences and restoration techniques pertaining to ecology, migratory fisheries, and coastal aquatic habitats and resources of the South Atlantic (NC to FL);  US Citizen/Permanent Resident; BS in Coastal or Aquatic Sciences or related fields
  • Click here for more information

Coastal Preservation Graduate Student Researcher - Surfrider Foundation

  • The Surfrider Foundation is seeking a graduate student to work remotely to compile a national report on the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LCWF)
  • Duration: Flexible, start September 2019 with report finished by December 5th, 2019
  • Contract Pay: $6,000
  • Application Deadline: September 15th, 2019
  • To apply and for more information click here

Internship with Arctic Refuge Defense Campaign

  • Assist with organization of the climate action campaign to protect the Arctic Wildlife Refuge from oil and gas drilling
  • Duration: Fall 2019 (Immediate hire to work through mid-December)
  • Hours: 10-15 hours per week; flexible with schedules
  • For more information and to apply click here
  • Reach out to an organizer here

Charleston County is currently looking for full time or part time graduate students for Fall Semester with an option to work through the summer. This is a paid internship and hours are flexible. With the workload we have and current policies we are developing, we can see this being a viable thesis or internship option for graduation requirements.

The assortment of the work would include but not limited to: FEMA grants for flood mitigation activities, ordinance writing and implementation of new flood policies, working with jurisdictions within Charleston County on collaborative efforts on flood control and storm water management, and learning about the County CRS program and the Hazard Mitigation Plan which encompasses public education and outreach.
The skills and knowledge needed would range from policy development, flood mitigation, NFIP, FEMA, CRS, floodplain management, grants, urban development, land use, GIS, research, and excellent writing and communication skills.
The internship would be housed in Building Inspection Services at Charleston County. Our office is at 4045 Bridge View Drive A-311, North Charleston, SC 29405.
Two graduate interns have now been hired as full time employees and many connections are made with other local and state government offices due to the nature of the County’s work.
Interested students should send a resume and letter of intent to Katherine Faith, Floodplain Management Coordinator, at as soon as possible. Positions are open until filled.


Student Workshop International Marine and Coastal Management (SWIMM) in the Gulf of Mexico

  • Date: January 8-17, 2020
  • Location: Ciudad del Carmen, Campeche and Mérida, Mexico
  • Deadline: September 9, 2019 (4:00 PM EST)
  • The SWIMM program invites graduate students enrolled in a Ph.D. or M.S. programs related to environmental management/science/anthropology and related fields
  • Program will cover round-trip travel and workshop-related transport, food, and lodging in Mérida
  • Find more information here

CDC Microplastics and Health Systematics Review Fellowship

  • The selected participate will conduct a systematic review of the literature to describe the potential human health effects of microplastics, contribute to the development of microplastics-related documents and communication materials, and provide technical assistance to requests involving microplastics.
  • Full-time appointment up to one year (renewal possible) at CDC in Atlanta with monthly stipend
  • Requirements: Master's or Doctoral Degree received with the past 60 months or currently pursuing
  • More information here

Sea Grant Fellowships
It's never too early to start preparing for upcoming Sea Grant Fellowships! Visit the website to learn about deadlines and application procedures for the following Sea Grant Fellowships: 

  • John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship
  • National Marine Fisheries Service-Sea Grant Joint Graduate Fellowship

Check out the following organizations for upcoming volunteer events:
REACH Program Mentors

The College of Charleston's REACH Program is a certificate program dedicated to ensuring students with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities get the most out of their higher education. The REACH program is seeking mentors that are closer in age to some of their older and non-traditional aged students.

Mentors are asked to commit 4-6 hours a week to participate in traditional activities with their mentee, which can include eating meals together, on and off campus events, or simply hanging out. These hours are flexible to the schedules of the mentor and mentee and can be weekdays, weeknights, and/or weekends. Their hope is to facilitate a friendship, beyond the mentor commitments.

Please contact Arianne Bauserman (, the Mentor Coordinator for the REACH Program, for a Mentor Information Form and more details.

The next Stono Student Garden volunteer day is on Sunday, September 8th from 2:00 to 5:00 pm. We are always in need of volunteers and would love it if you could come out and join us! For this workday we will be planting our fall seedlings and will have plenty of okra and other produce for you to harvest. If you would like to volunteer with us, email Michael Cranford at

Check social media for upcoming workdays and events:
Facebook: The Student Garden at Dixie Plantation
Instagram: @cofc_studentgarden

A big thank you to everyone who came out for the Welcome Back Potluck on August 23! Mark your calendars for our first fundraising event on September 18th from 4:00 - 8:00 pm at Verde (347 King Street) where 10% of sales will benefit MESSA. 

You can see a full calendar of all our upcoming events on our website:


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College of Charleston MES Program · 66 George St · Charleston, SC 29424-0001 · USA

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