Conservation research celebrated at National Student Awards

Ally Evans, Miranda Krestovnikoff and Flora Kent

Ally Evans, Miranda Krestovnikoff and Flora Kent

14 May, London: The famous Royal Society in central London was the venue last night for the presentation ceremony of the third annual P1 Marine Foundation National Student Awards.

The Awards evening celebrated and rewarded students in higher education whose projects help to provide solutions to the threats to the marine and coastal environment and provided the winning students with the opportunity to showcase their projects to a diverse audience of business executives, charities, government representatives and the media.

The evening began with a keynote speech from Miranda Krestovnikoff, a regular presenter on BBC Television’s ‘Coast’ programme and ‘One Show’, who highlighted the importance of student research for the future of marine conservation.

The winning entry came from Flora Kent, who is currently studying for a PhD in Marine Ecology at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh. Her project on the use of ecosystem services to support conservation of shellfish reefs was selected by the judging panel because they felt she was an excellent candidate who was fully prepared to think outside the ‘academic box’ in order to achieve conservation objectives. Flora was presented with a special trophy, a cheque for £1,000, a Sony Xperia waterproof smartphone and membership of IMarEST.

Also speaking at the Awards was runner up Ally Evans from Aberystwyth University, who discussed her ‘ReefCrete’ project featuring ecological engineering of artificial marine habitats. The other runner up was Clara Mackenzie, from Heriot-Watt University, whose project focused on the vulnerability of modiolus modiolus reefs to climate change.

During the course of the event the P1 Marine Foundation announced the launch of its 2015 National Student Awards in partnership with the Marine Conservation Society Wakefield Memorial Fund. The prizes include £1000 for the winner, £500 for the runner-up and the Wakefield Memorial Award of £500.

The deadline for entries is 12th December, for more information please visit: www.p1marinefoundation.com/Awards.ink

The National Student Awards give prominence to exciting and valuable projects of this nature that go beyond research and analysis to develop solutions to environmental problems.

The P1 Marine Foundation’s activities focus on awareness and education with the field of marine conservation, particularly amongst the younger age group, and are supported by The Crown Estate, IMarEST, Sony and the Marine Conservation Society.