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College to Host Symposium on Coastal Ecology and Management
Posted 01/14/2016 03:45PM

Brunswick, GA – On Friday, January 29 from 9 am to Noon, The College of Coastal Georgia (CCGA) will host a Symposium on Coastal Ecology and Management in the Southeast Georgia Conference Center on its Brunswick campus.

"The Georgia coast supports diverse and productive ecosystems and provides natural resources of immense economic and cultural value," explains Dr. Tate Holbrook, Assistant Professor of Biology at CCGA. "As our human population grows, it is important to understand and appreciate the connectedness of our coastal environment and communities, as well as to employ science-based management strategies to protect and sustain them. These are goals of the College's Coastal Ecology program that we wish to explore with the broader community through this symposium."

The event will include presentations by notable guest speakers who are active in ecological research and resource management along the coast. The Georgia Living Shoreline Work Group, represented by Jenessa Kay, Coastal Conservation Coordinator at The Nature Conservancy, Jan Mackinnon and Ben Maher, Biologists with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources – Coastal Resources Division (DNR-CRD), and Holbrook, will report on "Living Shorelines in Georgia: The Spat Awakens". Holbrook and his CCGA Conservation Biology class are working with the group to monitor the living shoreline at Cannon's Point Preserve on St. Simons Island.

Additional scheduled presentations include "Georgia's Cannonball Jellyfish Fishery – Someone Actually Eats Those Things?", delivered by Jim Page and Patrick Geer, also of DNR-CRD (Biologist and Chief of Marine Fisheries, respectively), along with CCGA collaborators Jeffery Tailer and Dr. David Stasek, Assistant Professor of Biology. Tailer, who recently completed a B.S. in Biological Sciences – Coastal Ecology, conducted undergraduate research on the association between cannonball jellyfish and spider crabs. Ben Carswell, Director of Conservation with the Jekyll Island Authority, will speak on "Exploring Historic Landscape Change on Jekyll Island".

The keynote address, "The Georgia Coastal Ecosystems Long Term Ecological Research: Marsh Response to Long-term Change," will be delivered by Dr. Merryl Alber. Alber is a Professor of Marine Sciences at the University of Georgia and the Director of the UGA Marine Institute at Sapelo Island. She also founded the Georgia Coastal Research Council, which serves to bring together coastal managers and academic scientists from throughout the state.

Presentations will be followed by a poster session showcasing research and service-learning by CCGA students, faculty, and community partners. A concurrent information fair will feature local organizations and opportunities for engagement in coastal conservation.

The event will be free and open to the public. Visitors may park next to the Southeast Georgia Conference Center at 4th Street and Mariner Way.


January 12, 2016

Contact: John Cornell

(912) 279 5703

About College of Coastal Georgia

College of Coastal Georgia is an undergraduate college in the University System of Georgia. Located on Georgia's coast, the College campus is in Brunswick with additional outreach through the Camden Center in Kingsland. The vision of the College is to be a college of choice for students within Georgia and beyond, providing an outstanding education for tomorrow's leaders and citizens through service learning, global awareness and engaged entrepreneurship. With a strong emphasis on student retention, progression and timely graduation, the College offers baccalaureate degrees in American Studies, Biological Sciences, Business Administration, Criminal Justice, Education, Health Informatics, Interdisciplinary Studies, Mathematics, Nursing (BSN), Psychology and Public Management as well as career associate degrees in Culinary Arts, Clinical Lab Technology, Nursing (ASN) and Radiologic Science. A veterans-friendly campus, the College is a designated Yellow Ribbon School. Approximately 3,100 students are served by more than 200 staff members and a teaching faculty of whom 52% hold doctoral degrees. CCGA is an active participant in the Complete College Georgia initiative designed to support community partnerships and develop the critical thinking, problem-solving and communication skills necessary to address the challenges of 21st century economic development and community wellbeing. For more information, visit the College website:

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