Georgia Southern University

Marine Biology Conference and Film Festival

3-12 Marine biology conferenceFaculty members from Georgia Southern University’s Department of Biology will host one of the largest scientific conferences for marine biologists in the country from March 20-23 at the Hyatt Regency in Savannah, Ga. The 42nd annual Benthic Ecology Meeting will also feature a unique film festival that will showcase 15 marine and conservation films.

Georgia Southern biology faculty members Daniel Gleason, Ph.D., Alan Harvey, Ph.D., and Risa Cohen, Ph.D., have helped organize the conference which is expected to attract more than 600 marine biologists from the U.S. and around the world.

“Benthic organisms are those that live on, or in association with, the seabed and include such things as sponges, corals, oysters and shrimp,” said Gleason, president of the Benthic Ecology Meeting Society. “They basically live on the bottom of the ocean and play an important part in all aspects of ocean health and function.” Of the nearly 500 oral and poster presentations planned for the three-day conference, more than two-thirds will be by graduate students, making this event one of the top “student-friendly” scientific conferences in the country.

“We appreciate the opportunity to involve Georgia Southern University in this national conference, and we are excited to host the meeting in Savannah,” explained Gleason. “This conference will provide a forum where biology students and working professionals can meet and exchange ideas regarding the ecology of benthic marine organisms and communities. In addition, it will have a positive economic impact on our area and will shine a positive light on Savannah.”

The Beneath the Waves Film Festival is scheduled for March 21. With a goal of communicating stories of marine research and ocean conservation to a wide audience, the festival caters to filmmakers of all backgrounds and skill levels including students, amateurs and professionals. While only meeting attendees may attend the festival, the videos will be made available for viewing online after the meeting at

For more information on the 42nd Benthic Ecology Meeting, visit:

Georgia Southern University, a Carnegie Doctoral/Research University founded in 1906, offers more than 120 degree programs serving more than 20,500 students. Through eight colleges, the University offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs built on more than a century of academic achievement.  Georgia Southern is recognized for its student-centered approach to education. Visit:

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