ES Spring Picnic/BBQ — Wednesday May 2nd

Our annual ES spring picnic/BBQ is coming up!  Join the “Mad Men” and women of the ES department to celebrate the end of the academic year, and all your great accomplishments.

Here are all the details…

What: the ES department SPRING PICNIC and BBQ

When: Wednesday, May 2nd from 5:00-7:00 PM

Where: The patio outside of the Science Center’s lower level

What: burgers (veggie and local meat), beer, wine, snacks, and more

See you there!



Other Mad Men and Women:  Donna, and Professors Terlizzi, Morris, Fox and Hawkins!



Rutherford (Rud) V. Platt

Associate Professor, Dept of Environmental Studies

300 N. Washington St.

Gettysburg College

Gettysburg, PA 17325

Phone: 717-337-6078

Fax: 717-337-8550




Brian Kelley’s Menhaden Film on MPTV

Hi ES Students,

Environmental Studies alum, Brian Kelley (class of 2010), made a new documentary, Menhaden: The Most Important Fish in the Bay.  It will be airing on Maryland Public Television on Monday, April 16th at 10pm.  Some of you might remember his ES 460 film “On the Fence”, which won the CINE Golden Eagle Award.  This new film has been selected to join the Wild and Scenic Film Festival tour.  Congratulations Brian! See below for details.  



From: Brian Kelley []
Sent: Friday, April 13, 2012 1:32 PM
To: Salma Monani; Daniel E. Terlizzi; John Commito; Kristoffer Nessler; John Regentin; Sarah Principato
Subject: Menhaden Film this Monday

Hi Everyone,

Just wanted to send out a reminder that this Monday our film on the Menhaden is kicking off Chesapeake Bay week on Maryland Public Television at 10PM. I am not completely confident on this but I believe MPT is broadcast in Southern PA so Gettysburg should have the channel.

We have received some very good reviews of the film and it has already been selected to join the Wild and Scenic Film Festival tour in several cities.

Also, the film has been submitted to some larger festivals including Blue Oceans and Wildscreen so keep your fingers crossed.

Please pass the airtime information on to anyone you think might be interested.

Dan Terlizzi and I have talked about screening the film in his class before the end of the semester so if you can’t see it on Monday there may be another opportunity.


Glatfelter Leadership Prize Recipient – Sara Tower

Congratulations to Environmental Studies major, Sara Tower (class of 2012)!! She is the recipient of the Charles Glatfelter Leadership Prize from Phi Beta Kappa!!  This award is given to a student that has demonstrated extraordinary leadership skills while maintaining an excellent academic performance.  Nice job Sara!!



Sarah Principato, Associate Professor

Chair of Environmental Studies

Gettysburg College

Gettysburg, PA 17325


NOAA Hollings Scholarship Winner – Sondra Winders

CONGRATULATIONS to Environmental Studies major, Sondra Winders (class of 2014)!! She won The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Ernest F. Hollings (Hollings) scholarship!

Sondra is the third Environmental Studies major to win this prestigious, national award.  Past recipients include Brittany Jones (class of 2012) and Alex Horning (class of 2010), as well as ES minor, Peter Murray (class of 2011).  

Description of the Hollings Scholarship from the noaa website:

The Hollings Scholarship Program provides successful undergraduate applicants with awards that include academic assistance (up to a maximum of $8,000 per year) for full-time study during the 9-month academic year; a 10-week, full-time internship position ($650/week) during the summer at a NOAA facility; and, if reappointed, academic assistance (up to a maximum of $8,000) for full-time study during a second 9-month academic year. The internship between the first and second years of the award provides the Scholars with "hands-on"/ practical educational training experience in NOAA-related science, research, technology, policy, management, and education activities. Awards also include travel funds to attend a mandatory NOAA Scholarship Program orientation, conferences where students present a paper or poster, and a housing subsidy for scholars who do not reside at home during the summer internship.



Sarah Principato, Associate Professor

Chair of Environmental Studies

Gettysburg College

Gettysburg, PA 17325


ES rocks marine science conference!

Hi, ES folks –

            ES students Brittany Jones and Mitchell Jones presented their ES 460 results at the 41st annual Benthic Ecology Conference, the largest international conference on seafloor ecology.  Mitchell beat out hundreds of graduate students to win 3rd prize in the student poster competition!  Yee-ha!

            Recent ES alums Sara Coleman (now a grad student at the Marine Science Program at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill) and Theresa Davenport (College of William and Mary’s Virginia Institute of Marine Science) also presented the results of their on-going graduate research.

            For details see below.

            ES rocks! – John

Here are the titles of their presentations:

Brittany Jones, Mitchell Jones, and John Commito

“Go with the Flow: Biogenic Structure Types Alter Bedload Transport and Dispersal Dynamics of Macrofauna and Meiofauna in Maine Mussel Beds.”

This project examined the effects of structural seafloor “roughness elements” on small-scale hydrodynamic processes in the Gulf of Maine.  The authors showed that mussel bed topography significantly alters flux rates of sediment and invertebrate animals, with implications for carbon sequestration and the maintenance of seafloor biodiversity.

Mitchell Jones, Brittany Jones, and John Commito

"Mussel Beds Are Mostly…Mud and Shells, not Mussels!  Ecosystem Engineer Cover Types Alter Sediment, Macrofauna, and Meiofauna in Maine, USA."

The research characterized the spatial distribution of mussel bed biogenic structure — live mussels, empty shells, and fragmented shell material.  It demonstrated significant impacts of this augmented habitat complexity on sediment characteristics and the biodiversity of seafloor organisms that inhabit the Gulf of Maine coastal zone.

Sara Coleman, Joel F. Fodrie, and Niels Lindquist  “Interactive Effects of a Bioeroder and Predators on Eastern Oyster Mortality.”

The researchers demonstrated that oysters infested with a sponge species that bores into their shells causes significant weakening, which makes the commercially valuable oysters susceptible to higher rates of predation by crabs.   

Theresa M. Davenport and Rochelle D. Seitz

“Impacts of Shoreline Development on Near-Shore Communities of Chesapeake Bay: Before and After.”

The authors demonstrated that altering the shoreline with seawalls and other “hard” structures has significant negative impacts on coastal habitats and the organisms that live in them.

John A. Commito


Environmental Studies Department

Gettysburg College

Gettysburg, PA 17325 USA


Phone:    717-337-6030

Fax:        717-337-8550