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COA students win ornithology scholarship

Student ornithologists Rosie Chater and Wriley Hodge are winners of the 2022 Sal Rooney Memorial ...Student ornithologists Rosie Chater and Wriley Hodge are winners of the 2022 Sal Rooney Memorial Scholarship.

Rosie Chater ’25 and Wriley Hodge ’24 are winners of the 2022 Sal Rooney Memorial Scholarship from the Downeast Chapter of the Maine Audubon Society. The scholarships are worth $2000 each. Wriley will be studying gulls at the COA Alice Eno Field Research Station on Great Duck Island. Rosie will be researching at the Edward McC Blair Marine Research Station on Mount Desert Rock

Previously, COA students Aya Kumagai ’20 and Eleanor Gnam ’23 were also awarded this scholarship. Aya did comparative work in Maine and her native country, Japan, examining how flight patterns of seabirds could pose risk from off-shore development. Eleanor researched Leach’s storm petrels, their nest site fidelity, and the relation of vegetation structure to nest placement at the station on Great Duck Island. 

The Sal Rooney Scholarship is given annually in memory of Sal Rooney, a member and trustee of the Maine Audubon Downeast Chapter for many years. Rooney, a natural historian, botanist, and birder, was the first woman to graduate from University of Maine with a BS in wildlife. She was a true pioneer, dedicated to the wildlife and landscapes of Maine and lowering barriers for women scientists.