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Natalia Benejam, Ph.D. Student

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We are delighted to announce Natalia Benejam as one of our new PhD students in 2023. Natalia has had a lifelong passion for marine conservation. Her journey in marine science began with a childhood fascination for the ocean, sparked by

frequent visits to aquariums and her admiration for marine-themed movies like Finding Nemo. These

early interests laid the foundation for her academic pursuits and research in marine biology.

Natalia's academic credentials include a B.S. in Marine Biology from Rutgers University. Double minors in ecology, evolution, and natural resources, and women and gender studies complemented her studies. During her time at Rutgers, Natalia engaged in several research projects, notably in the summer of 2022, working alongside a Ph.D. student to explore the role of small pelagic fish in the carbon cycle within the Mid-Atlantic Bight. Additionally, through her coursework, she contributed to analyses of glider data, aiding in the understanding of spatial and temporal changes in water quality parameters. Her undergraduate experience also involved participating in the Challenger Mission at Rutgers, a multi-year initiative to pilot ocean gliders around the world’s ocean basins to spread ocean literacy and educate the general public about our ocean.

Before her undergraduate studies, Natalia was involved in her high school's Advanced Science Research Program, where she researched the interactions among different shark species in captivity. She also worked at the Center For The Urban River At Beczak, focusing on urban river ecology and environmental education.

Natalia's addition to the IOCS team is a testament to her deep-seated enthusiasm for marine science and her commitment to advancing our understanding of marine ecosystems. She eagerly anticipates delving into her graduate studies and research, contributing significantly to our ongoing projects and the broader goals of the Institute.

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