The MBES graduate track provides training for the Ph.D. degree in numerous aspects of marine molecular biosciences and chemistry that relate to environmental and human health. MBES is a track within the interdepartmental program, Molecular & Cell Biology and Pathobiology (MCBP), of the College of Graduate Studies of the Medical University of South Carolina. New students begin their training in the first year curriculum taken by all matriculating doctoral students. This provides the students with a strong grounding in state of the art courses in biochemistry and molecular and cell biology This knowledge is then applied to "real world" environmental and human health problems through the MBES students doctoral research.
MBES is not a traditional marine biology program nor is it a classical medical school doctoral program. MBES is a hybrid of the 2 programs. This unique approach to graduate education allows students to choose where along the spectrum of interest from human health to marine environment they wish to focus their research.
Students who wish to strengthen their environmental background can take relevant graduate courses (e.g. ecology, oceanography, marine botany) at the Grice Marine Laboratory, College of Charleston on the Fort Johnson campus. Students wishing to increase their background in human disease can take graduate level courses at the downtown medical campus (e.g. pathology, immunology, cancer biology). The focus of MBES is on the students gaining molecular/chemistry skills and then applying them to environmentally important questions.
Students are provided a College of Graduate Studies stipend of $23,000 per year including health insurance. Beginning with the 13th month students are supported by their mentor from extramural grant funds, agency operating funds, or other sources including fellowships, grants or awards that the student themselves may acquire. Competitive scholarships and fellowships are available through the graduate school as well as extramurally.
Students’ mentors can be chosen from the MBES graduate faculty. The mentor must be a full member of the graduate faculty whether located onsite at the Fort Johnson Campus, Medical Campus or another institution. Students choose a mentor no later than the end of the 14 month College of Graduate Studies stipend. Choice of the mentor is made by the students having done four laboratory rotations of approximately six weeks each during the afternoon of the first academic year. Together with the mentor and in consultation with the MBES director, students choose a dissertation research committee consisting of five faculty members. Students present and defend a thesis proposal before the scientific community and their committee no later than the end of their second academic year. Students are expected to defend their thesis and complete all academic requirements for the PhD degree no later than five years from the date of their matriculation.
Partners on the Marine Campus
Key to the doctoral training and research program is the active collaboration of our other on-site partner institutions:
1.National Ocean Service (NOAA)
2.Grice Marine Lab (College of Charleston)
3.Marine Resources Research Institute (SC Department of Natural Resources)
4.National Institutes of Standards and Technology
MBES belongs to the following professional societies:
National Association of Marine Labs
American Association for the Advancement of Science
Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science
American Elasmobranch Society
Pan American Marine Biotechnology Association (PAMBA) -Asociancion Panamericana de Biotechnologia Marina (APABM)
Beginning with the second academic year, students are required to attend two seminars per week. These may include the MCBP External, Internal, or the Fort Johnson Marine Seminar series.
MBES Committee Participation
Graduate Council. MBES representative is Dr. Lou Guillette
Graduate Council Student Representative is Emily Allen (Graduate Student)
Admissions MBES representative is Dr. Michael Janech
First Year Curriculum Steering Committee MBES representative is Dr. Lou Guillette
College of Graduate Studies Curriculum Steering Committee MBES representative is Dr. Cheryl Woodley
Hollings Marine Lab Safety Committee MBES representatives are Ms Chloe Backman, Dr. Satomi Kohno.
Hollings Marine Lab Science Board MBES representative is Dr. Lou Guillette
Hollings Marine Lab Executive Board MUSC representative is Dr. Steve Lanier
MUSC Intellectual Property Committee MBES representative is Dr. Lou Guillette
MCBP Executive Committee MBES representative is Dr. Lou Guillette
- Fort Johnson Seminar Committee: MBES representative is Ben Parrott (Post Doctoral Fellow)
Letter from the Director to Prospective Students