Our mission is to ensure healthy sport fisheries by providing resources to the next generation’s brightest marine science students.
Shimano and Coastal Conservation Association have teamed up to fund four scholarships dedicated to students furthering their marine science education at the Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies (HRI) at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi.
“Science has long been a cornerstone for our corporate fish conservation initiatives,” says Phil Morlock, vice president of Government Affairs /Advocacy for Shimano. “We are proud to expand our partnership with CCA and HRI to encourage college student anglers to enter the profession of marine fishery sciences.”
CCA and HRI have a long history of joint efforts designed to improve understanding of the marine environment and enhance the role that recreational anglers can play as stewards of our shared marine resources. Those efforts include creation of the Center for Sportfish Science and Conservation housed within HRI. Under the direction of Dr. Greg Stunz, the mission of CSSC is to advance knowledge of marine sportfish and promote conservation through science-based fisheries management.
“Our long history with HRI combined with the leadership role Shimano has taken in the conservation arena make this an inspiring partnership,” said Patrick Murray, president of CCA. “We’ve had tremendous success collaborating with marine science institutes like HRI and others in the past, and this scholarship program will create continued opportunities in the future. Science is at the core of formulating all our policy decisions, so helping to ensure the best and brightest of the next generation have everything they need to continue their education is a win for marine resources and for anglers.”
“As a recipient of a CCA scholarship, I know the value this kind of support can provide students striving to reach their full potential in this challenging field,” Dr. Stunz said. “It is truly inspiring to partner with CCA and Shimano in a program that is designed as an investment in the future. The need for robust science to serve as the key underpinning to fisheries management is only going to increase in the future, and the students of today will be the ones to develop it.”
Success Story: Scholarship recipient completes PhD
Dr. Kesley Gibson, one of the first recipients of a Science of Conservation Marine Scholarship, recently completed her Ph.D. at the Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi. Dr. Gibson’s research has focused on migratory patterns and artificial reef habitat use of fisheries species in the northwestern Gulf of Mexico, including red snapper, king mackerel, cobia and multiple shark species.
“We are incredibly proud of Kesley for this accomplishment and look forward to following her career as a leader in the field of marine science,” said Pat Murray, president of CCA National. “We need the best and brightest of the next generation to ensure that the marine resources we enjoy today are healthy and available for future generations.”
The Science of Conservation Marine Scholarship Program was founded in 2018 through a partnership of Shimano and CCA. In its first year, the program funded four scholarships dedicated to students furthering their marine science education at the Harte Research Institute (HRI) at Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi. With the addition of supporting partners BP and the CCA Music City Chapter, the program is expanding to offer additional scholarships at marine science centers in other regions.