An international group of students on a prestigious Masters Degree at the Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS UHI) in Oban is catching the eye of the aquaculture industry.
The 25 students, who come from all corners of the globe, are the second cohort to join the Erasmus Mundus Joint Masters Degree (EMJMD) in Aquaculture, Environment and Society (ACES), awarded jointly by the University of the Highlands and Islands and University of Crete.
The group, all based in and around Oban for an initial six months, represent 19 countries, including New Zealand, Jamaica, Peru, Brazil, Pakistan, China, Colombia and the USA. As part of the two-year ACES programme, they will continue their studies in Crete next February and in autumn 2017 will move on to Nantes before spending the final six months of their Masters at one of the three partner organisations.
The academic course will cover industry-relevant aspects of aquaculture, such as environmental issues, governance, technology, life cycles and feed production.
Course leader Dr Elizabeth Cottier-Cook, a senior researcher at SAMS, said: “The ACES programme provides fully-funded scholarships for EU and non-EU students in a bid to attract the very best aquaculture students from around the world. It also allows the students to share their experiences of that industry from nation to nation. This helps us build on the academic elements of the course and encourages a curiosity about links between academia and industry.”
The course also invites guest lecturers and scholars from the United Nations, as well as research institutes in Tasmania, Israel and the USA.
Marine Harvest sponsors a scholarship for one EU-based student, who will go on to complete their studies with the company.
Applications are now being accepted for fully funded scholarships for the next academic year of the EM JMD ACES programme, starting in September 2017. Applications from EU and non-EU candidates are welcome – the programme is aimed at students from all over the world. Scholarships will cover tuition fees, living and travel expenses.