UC Davis graduate stoles showing the words "UC Davis", "First Generation" "Global Aggies" and "Legacy"

2021 Commencement

Congratulations to the 2021 Marine and Coastal Science Major Graduates!

We celebrate all of you and the enthusiasm, passion, and dedication to marine science that has brought you here, and will lead you to revolutionize scientific understanding of our field, communicate, connect, and engage with communities, and become educators, researchers, and world-changers.

Meet some of this year's grads, and find out where they're headed next:

A person in wading gear and a UC Davis graduation stole
Camille Rumberger

Camille Rumberger

"I came to Davis unaware that marine science was a major until a few months into my freshman year, when I quickly ditched the pre-med track to go play with marine critters. Since then, I have been fortunate to find myself in a supportive and inspiring community of scientists, and to form lasting friendships with my ocean-loving peers. I’ll never forget my time at the Bodega Marine Lab, or contributing to marine research on campus, and I’m incredibly grateful for the great mentors have shaped my time here. Currently, I’m looking forward to one more field season this summer in Mo’orea, where I’ll be aiding the Bay Lab with some coral research. Then I’m off to work for Eco Alpha as an environmental technician, and eventually I plan to return to school for a masters in genetics!"

-Camille Rumberger

A man standing in front of an outdoor background with a UC Davis graduation stole
Erik Partolan

Erik Partolan

"I was originally a chemistry major when I transferred to UC Davis from community college, but I always knew that I wanted to study a more specific subfield of chemistry. Having a strong interest in Earth systems and processes, learning about the Marine Environmental Chemistry focus within the MCS major felt like a great fit! A majority of my time in this program has been virtual due to the pandemic, but I am incredibly grateful for the opportunities that have been presented to me, as well as the wonderful and supportive classmates, professors, and TAs I have met along the way. I hope to continue to pursue my interests in Earth sciences through postgraduate studies in the near future!"

-Erik Partolan

MCS Focus: Marine Environmental Chemistry

Erik was also awarded an MCS Senior Award: Citation for Outstanding Performance.

A picture of a woman posing in front of a coastal background
Francheska Torres

Francheska Torres

"The focus area I chose within the Marine and Coastal Science major is marine ecology and organismal biology. I changed my major my third year to Marine and Coastal Science, because I found a passion for marine biology through my introductory biology courses. By changing my major, I have been introduced to the amazing world of oceanography and the systems of the ocean that contribute to life. After graduating, I plan to work as a junior specialist for the UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences to further my knowledge of aquatic life."

-Francheska Torres

A man smiling in front of a sunset coastal background, wearing a UC Davis graduation stole
Isaiah Bluestein

Isaiah Bluestein

"I chose UC Davis because of how welcoming people were during my campus tour four years ago. It was a good choice because the marine science community here has been incredibly encouraging and supportive throughout my time as an undergrad. Some of the highlights include working with the Morgan lab at the Bodega Marine Laboratory, my time as the campus outreach coordinator of the marine science club, and all the brilliant, kind, fun people I have met in this tight-knit community. I’m so grateful for the endless support from my mentors, professors, and classmates.

I’ll be spending the summer working with the Rypel lab surveying high elevation Sierra lake food webs and getting my scientific diving certification at BML. In the fall, I’ll be looking for field tech positions in coral ecology or kelp restoration."

-Isaiah Bluestein

Isaiah was also awarded an MCS Senior Award: Outstanding Senior Award and Department Citation.

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Michael Brito

Michael Brito

"I took a leap of faith during my third year and switched into the Marine Science major. For the first time during my undergrad, I finally poured myself into my studies. I loved learning about the ocean and the diverse life that inhabit our coasts. With genuine support from all the CMSI faculty and professors at BML, I found confidence in my abilities as a student and as a member of the Marine Science community. A few of my peers and I wanted to pay that forward, so we rebooted the Marine Science Club. I hope it will serve as a way for ocean-loving undergrads to connect for years to come.

For the next year, I will be working as a research assistant at Friday Harbor Labs. I will be working on a project aiming to understand how to rear Pycnopodia helianthoides, the sunflower seastar, in captivity so that we can one day reintroduce them along the Pacific coast. I am so thrilled to continue learning about marine life."

-Michael Brito

A person standing behind a brick sign that reads "UC Davis", wearing a UC Davis graduation stole
Robert Dellinger

Robert Dellinger

"My early life perspectives were formed along the Jersey Shore as an amalgamation of the impacts of anthropogenic-induced climate change and environmental degradation.  Witnessing drastic changes within the ecosystems around me, and the impacts that it had on local livelihoods inspired me to pursue a double major in marine and coastal science and international relations. As an undergraduate student, I have been presented the ability to spend time as a marine and environmental scientist, student researcher, campus ambassador, and community organizer.  Whether through researching socio-ecological systems in Lake Atitlan, Guatemala, to summer courses at the Bodega Marine Laboratory (BML), my academic career has granted me the ability to explore various career paths and expand my scientific toolkit by enabling me to conduct interdisciplinary research that is both practicable and applicable. Next year I will be attending California State University, Northridge to pursue a master's degree in biology, focusing on the impacts of multiple environmental stressors on marine organisms  I hope to engage in future research on marine ecosystems that includes communities and policy. As I progress through my education my primary goals are to alter academia's settings for future students from marginalized backgrounds and amplify the voices of those that are more affected by the ravages of environmental degradation."

-Robert Dellinger

Robert was also awarded an MCS Senior Award: Department Citation.

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