The Lophos Project for college students
The Lophos Project is an exciting initiative based at the Manchester Metropolitan University under the guidance of our second year PhD student and specialist Vanessa Yepes-Narvaez. It focuses on marine invertebrates around the United Kingdom, giving college students and volunteers the chance to work alongside MMU scientists and immerse them in real research. This project emerged from the need to find new ways of showing the community of Greater Manchester the importance of marine sciences and how to control ocean acidification and preserve our oceans. We believe involving the non-scientific community in this work is a valuable and enormously rewarding experience for all those taking part, and we are committed to providing them with a unique, worthwhile and fun experience. The first part of this project is being developed by final year secondary students from Bolton College and it focuses mainly on bryozoans and the epifauna attached to natural and artificial substrates found at 20 m deep around Plymouth. Basically, we are identifying the bryozoans and analysing the percentage of coverage of all those epibionts to provide useful information about the ecology of marine invertebrates in the United Kingdom. The students are enjoying being part of this opportunity and are looking forward to write a short article about their findings in some academic magazines!