Skip to Main Content

Press Release for Tuesday, June 4, 2013

UNF Coastal Biology Graduate Student Receives Guy Harvey Scholarship

Media Contact: Joanna Norris, Associate Director

Department of Public Relations

(904) 620-2102


 Arianne Leary, a University of North Florida graduate student, received a $5,000 Guy Harvey Scholarship for her outstanding achievement in marine science research. She is pursuing a master’s degree in coastal biology and is among eight graduate students at Florida universities that received a scholarship this year.


The scholarship, established in 2010 through a partnership between Florida Sea Grant and the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation, recognizes students at Florida universities whose research focuses on the biology, ecology, habitat or management of fish in Florida’s marine environment.

“This year 52 highly qualified students applied for this distinguished award. The recipients are the best and brightest of Florida’s graduate students who are studying fisheries science and policy,” said Karl Havens, Florida Sea Grant director.


Leary, currently a graduate research assistant in the UNF Coastal Biology program, is looking at the long-term effects of oil exposure on Gulf fish. She is examining how the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill affected the reproduction efforts of some species, such as small sharks and red snapper, and the subsequent potential population impacts. Her research interests include toxicology, elasmobranch biology, marine/coastal biology and environmental biology.


She received her bachelor’s degree in biology from UNF in 2012 and graduated with Latin honors. Leary also served as an undergraduate research assistant in Coastal Biology and received a $1,500 UNF Student Mentored Academic Research Team Grant for her undergraduate research. She analyzed shark bile for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) biomarkers, which are the most toxic constituent of oil. The PAHs provided insight as to how the Gulf of Mexico responded to the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.


The Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation is an organization of philanthropists, conservationists, scientists and educators that emphasizes sensible strategies for promoting ocean conservation and the development of the next generation of marine scientists. The foundation funds research and educational programs developed by universities, colleges, institutes and nonprofit organizations.


UNF, a nationally ranked university located on an environmentally beautiful campus, offers students who are dedicated to enriching the lives of others the opportunity to build their own futures through a well-rounded education.