CURRENT INTERNS

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MADI GORDANIER

Madi Gordanier graduated from the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo with a BSc in Marine Science in December of 2020. While at UH Hilo, she had incredible experiences working as a student assist for both the Marine Turtle Biology and Assessment Program (MTBAP) and the UH Hilo Marine Mammal Lab. After graduation, she moved to Oʻahu and began interning with MMRP in April of 2021, working with Liah McPherson on her spinner dolphin abundance and demographics project. With MMRP, she has learned new research techniques both in the field and in the lab, such as photo-ID, data management, and basic seamanship. She is confident these skills will be beneficial for exploring careers in marine mammal science.

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KYLEIGH FERTITTA

Kyleigh is a recent graduate from California State University, Chico, with a BSc in Biology and minor in Sustainability. She spent her senior year on Oʻahu at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa during a National Student Exchange program, began interning with MMRP in April of 2021, and has been assisting Liah McPherson with spinner dolphin population research off West Oʻahu. She has also contributed to spinner dolphin research efforts lead by Claire Lacey and Fabien Vivier. Over time, she has developed skills in photo-ID data collection and processing, basic seamanship and data management. Kyleigh is interested in sea turtles, sharks, and corals, in addition to marine mammals, and hopes to apply the skills she’s learned with MMRP to future endeavors in marine biology.

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LEWIS EVANS

Lewis is a graduate of Marine Biology from Bangor University, Wales. He has been working with Martin van Aswegen on his research quantifying humpback whale bioenergetics between Hawaii and Alaska. He will also be assisting Claire Lacey assessing abundance of spinner dolphins across the Hawaiian Islands. Through this opportunity, Lewis has developed a strong sense for data collection, management and handling, whilst developing other skills including equipment maintenance, boating and photo-ID. His experience at MMRP has encouraged him to pursue a career in marine mammal biology and allowed him to gain an understanding of what is required of a marine mammal biologist. 

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RIVER CORRADO

River is an undergraduate student at Colgate University pursuing a BSc degree in Marine and Freshwater Science. His internship at MMRP has been focused around assisting Kirby Parnel with acoustic analysis of Hawaiian monk seal vocalizations, but he is assisting MMRP researchers with various projects this summer. River is particularly interested in how anthropogenic disturbances affect the health of marine mammals and hopes to explore a career in marine mammal veterinary medicine. He aims to use the skills he learns at MMRP to dive into a variety of different fields in marine biology. His time at Colgate has consisted of ski racing and freshwater exploration, but his appreciation for the ocean has brought him to the islands. 

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KELSIE GRANT

Kelsie is an undergraduate student at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, where she studies Communications Multimedia and Anthropology. At MMRP, Kelsie is helping run the social media platforms. She enjoys both going out into the field to document the researchers and marine mammals, and sharing the insights of what is going on in the lab. Kelsie is an avid sailor and is on the UH sailing team.

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CAMERON NEMETH

Cameron graduated from the University of North Texas in December of 2021 with a B.A. in Psychology and a minor in Human Development and Family Sciences. He started his second Bachelor's degree in Marine Biology at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa in the spring of 2022, and began an internship with MMRP where he assists Liah McPherson with spinner dolphin abundance and demographics off the west coast of O'ahu. He is developing skills in photo-ID, data processing, and basic seamanship. Cameron has always had a deep curiosity and passion for marine mammals, and will take the skills and experiences learned with MMRP to pursue higher education in marine sciences, and one day make a career rooted in conserving and regenerating our oceans. 

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ISABEL LEVIN

Isabel is an undergraduate student at Harvard University majoring in biology with a focus in marine biology and a minor in psychology.  At MMRP she has been working with Claire Lacey on her spinner dolphin abundance assessment project. Isabel has been participating in field work on Oʻahu and the Big Island, developing photo-ID and data processing skills in addition to gaining field work experience. Isabel enjoys learning about the different types of marine mammal research conducted at MMRP.  She is an avid scuba diver.  Isabel hopes to apply the skills she learns with MMRP to pursue higher education in marine biology.

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ASHLEY MARXSEN

Ashley is an undergraduate student studying Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Sciences at Oregon State University, but is originally from Kailua. At MMRP, she is assisting with Claire Lacey’s project on the abundance and distribution of spinner dolphins around the Hawaiian islands. Ashley’s love for the ocean has fueled her interest in marine animals and she is excited to be learning more about them. Through this internship, Ashley has gained both field and photo grading experience. She hopes to use these skills to do more fieldwork in the future. Ashley enjoys hiking, going to the beach, reading, and crafting.