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Lisa Clough (PhD, 1993)

Lisa and group at the South Pole

Lisa Clough, who received her Ph.D. in Coastal Oceanography from the Marine Sciences Research Center at Stony Brook University in 1993, was one of the first graduate alumni to be featured on our website. Her thesis, conducted under the direction of Professor Glenn Lopez was titled “Digestibility of Ice Algae and Phytoplankton: The Potential Impacts of Changing Food Supply to the Arctic Benthos.” She continued her work on the Arctic while a faculty member at East Carolina University

In 2015 Lisa was was named Head of the Ocean Section Division of Ocean Sciences at the National Science Foundation (NSF). Before this prestigious assignment, Lisa served as the Program Director for Antarctic Integrated System Science in the Division of Polar Programs at NSF. Lisa has served as chair of the UNOLS Arctic Icebreaking Coordinating Committee, and is the recipient of both the Arctic and Antarctic Service Medals, and the Distinguished Public Service Award from the U.S. Coast Guard. Prior to joining NSF Lisa was a faculty member at East Carolina University, also serving as the Associate Vice Chancellor for Research.

Lisa at the North Pole“The degree of collaboration between faculty, and the level of respect and camaraderie afforded graduate students by the faculty is what made my project possible, and what makes the MSRC environment truly unique. Since leaving MSRC, I’ve become an actual seagoing oceanographer, and I appreciate my multidisciplinary training all the more. My journeys have taken me to the Arctic Ocean four times in the last six years.

Because graduate students are encouraged to do things like give the informal Friday afternoon seminar, I felt very well prepared to present my ideas to colleagues, and to face the challenges of teaching at the college level. My training at the MSRC, and the support network that is in place among and between graduate students, faculty, and staff has allowed me to wind up in a job that I truly enjoy going to (almost) every morning!”