RCC-RILL explores dead zones

The Rappahannock Community College Educational Foundation’s Rappahannock Institute for Lifelong Learning (RILL) will collaborate with the Virginia Institute for Marine Science (VIMS) on one of its Spring 2017 courses: “Dead Zones in Chesapeake Bay and around the World.” VIMS scientist Dr. Elizabeth Shadwick and Ph.D. student Ike Irby will present the topic and lead discussion at VIMS’s Gloucester Point campus on March 22 and 29, and April 5 (Wednesdays) from 1 to 3 p.m.

During Session One, Dr. Shadwick will examine the impact of more than 400 dead zones—areas of sea floor with too little oxygen for most marine life—in waters around the world. Class participants will learn how these zones form, and how VIMS is monitoring areas of concern from the Chesapeake Bay to the Baltic Sea. The second session will cover the effects of climate change and nutrient reductions, as Ike Irby explains his Ph.D. research, particularly concerning EPA mandates on the subject. After each of these sessions, VIMS Outreach staff will moderate open discussions, and the final session will consist of a walking tour of VIMS laboratories and research related to dead zones.

Dr. Elizabeth Shadwick holds a bachelor’s degree from McGill University, a master’s degree from the University of Alberta, and a doctorate from Dalhousie University. Ike Irby is a joint doctoral/master’s degree candidate between VIMS and the College of William and Mary’s Program in Public Policy. He holds a bachelor’s degree in geology with a minor in physics from Bowdoin College.

Advance registration, with a tuition payment of $35, is required to take this course. For more information on “Dead Zones in Chesapeake Bay and around the World” and other RILL courses, or to register, please call Sharon Drotleff at RCC’s Educational Foundation office (804-333-6707), or e-mail her at sdrotleff@rappahannock.edu.

The Educational Foundation expresses sincere appreciation to the Bank of Lancaster’s Golden Advantage program, and to Rappahannock Westminster-Canterbury, for their generous support of RILL in 2017.