Students on boat performing an experiment.

Sea Change Semester

Experience life at the cutting edge of ocean science

Scientist teaching a student in laboratory.

Ocean science is in the middle of an incredible revolution. Climate change is rapidly reshaping life in the oceans, and new tools are being developed each day to reveal what it means for our planet.

Bigelow Laboratory offers a transformative, 14-week experience that puts these cutting-edge tools in your hands and empowers you to answer critical questions about the future of the ocean.

Rolling admission for the fall semester is capped at 12 students. Application should be received by February 15th for consideration for financial aid. Contact us at seachange@bigelow.org today!


Get the Details


Conduct real research

Aerial view of Bigelow Laboratory building.
  • Lead an independent investigation into questions that you want to answer
  • Enjoy exclusive access to a state-of-the-art laboratory
  • Conduct research cruises in the Gulf of Maine
  • Gain hands-on experience with the latest scientific tools
Students on boat performing an experiment.

Your Sea Change experience will give you exclusive access Bigelow Laboratory’s state-of-the-art facilities, as well as the tools and mentorship you need to lead an independent investigation into questions that you want to answer.

You will also get to participate in six daylong research cruises in the Gulf of Maine, supplemented with regular sampling of local waters. While at sea, you’ll use a full range of physical, chemical, and biological oceanographic instruments to collect water samples and environmental data for analysis and synthesis in the lab. The data you collect on these cruises will contribute to a long-term time series study of changing ocean conditions.

Join our community

Two students on dock holding seaweed.
  • Benefit from a personalized education program limited to 12 students each year to ensure optimal experience
  • Be mentored by accessible scientific leaders that provide unique opportunities to learn and build relationships
  • Live on the stunning Maine coast in a new, award-winning residence on the research campus
Scientist and student on boat highfive.

Your coursework and independent research will be enhanced by the accessible and welcoming Bigelow Laboratory community. You’ll have the opportunity to develop relationships with our leading scientists, in addition to attending regular seminars and working with researchers at other marine science laboratories. This rich experience will give you broad exposure to career options and help you develop a professional network within the diverse field of oceanography.

Continued Opportunities

Students in lab performing an experiment.

Many possibilities exist for continuing your relationship with Bigelow Laboratory after completing the semester program, including continued project work with senior research scientist mentors, future internships, opportunities for senior research projects in collaboration with the Laboratory, and advice for future academic pursuits from field veterans.