MASNA 2016-2017 Student Scholarship Press Release



The Marine Aquarium Societies of North America (MASNA) is proud to announce the 2016 – 2017 MASNA Student Scholarships.  MASNA is a non-profit organization composed of marine aquarium societies and individual hobbyists from North America and abroad, totaling several thousand individuals. 

MASNA’s goals are to:

  • Educate our members with online and published material, the MACNA conference, and other sanctioned events.
  • Assist in forming and promoting the growth of clubs within the hobby while ensuring a sustainable future for the marine environment.
  • Support the efforts to eliminate abuses in collecting and transporting marine organisms through education, assistance and encouragement.
  • Encourage the ethical growth of the marine aquarium hobby and support captive breeding/propagation efforts.

To further the goals of MASNA, MASNA offers the MASNA Student Scholarship program to help stimulate and promote the pursuit of marine science, in particular for topics that are current and relevant to the marine aquarium hobby. 

This year there are two scholarships available; one $4,000 scholarship for a college undergraduate student and one $4,000 scholarship for a college graduate student. The 2016 – 2017 MASNA Student scholarships are made possible by generous sponsors Doctors Foster and Smith, Ecotech Marine, and MASNA.

This is the 8th year for the MASNA Student Scholarship Program. In total, the MASNA Student Scholarship program has contributed $40,000 to college students who have significantly impacted the marine aquarium hobby.

For information on eligibility criteria and application instructions, please visit the MASNA Student Scholarship webpage at: 

The 2016 – 2017 MASNA Student Scholarships will be publicly awarded to the recipients at the 28th annual Marine Aquarium Conference of North America (MACNA) in San Diego, California on September 9 – 11th. Funding is available to assist each of the chosen applicants in attending MACNA.

If the applicants have any questions, please refer to the FAQ section of the MASNA Scholarship webpage. If the applicants cannot find the answers they are seeking there, they can direct their questions about the MASNA Student Scholarships to the scholarship committee co-chairs at:

About the previous 2015 – 2016 Winners:

Tim Lyons, Junior in Marine Science at the University of Florida

Bio: Tim Lyons graduated with a Bachelor of Science from the University of Florida in April of 2016 with a study focus in ornamental aquaculture. During his last semester at the University of Florida, he completed his AAUS Scientific Diving Certification and was published in a scientific poster that was presented at the World Aquaculture Society’s annual meeting. He is currently seeking higher education in larval aquaculture, and plans to work towards a position as a hatchery manager.

Liz Marchio, Ph.D. candidate in “Science as Leisure” at Texas A&M University

Bio: “I am a trained ichthyologist interested in what gets people interested in​ aquatic conservation and science. To explore this question I am utilizing leisure-based constructs to parse out different types of aquarium-keepers and their conservation and science-related attributes. By exploring different styles of participation in aquarium-keeping science and industry can better understand how to make the hobby more exciting, promote diversity, understand conservation-related mindsets, and promote aquarium-keeping as a scientific leisure activity. Having this basic knowledge about aquarists will help identify opportunities to improve and maintain the hobby for years to come.”

The deadline for this years submission is June 17, 2016 by midnight of the submitting applicant’s time zone.  Additional information about MASNA can be found here and MACNA 2016 information can be found here.


About Author

Scott Groseclose is the owner of AquaNerd, Aquarium Specialty, Aqua Specialty Wholesale, BioTek Marine, & The Carolina Reef Experience. He has a degree in Biology from St. Andrews University and he has been a passionate reef keeper since 1988.