New Education Directors for University Programs

Andrew and Sam

New Assistant Director of University Programs Samantha de Putron and Director of University Programs Andrew Peters, both faculty members at BIOS, began their appointments this month.

Two long-serving members of the BIOS faculty assumed new roles this month in the Education Department, while members of the Institute wished former director Penelope Barnes farewell after four years of service.

Andrew Peters, an environmental chemist and faculty member at BIOS since 2003, has been appointed as the new Director of University Programs. While serving as Director he will continue oversight of his two current research programs: the BIOS Bermuda Environmental Quality Program and the Tudor-Hill Marine Atmospheric Observatory, both in place to further understand the interface between the ocean and the atmosphere. His teaching experience at BIOS has included instruction of several oceanography courses for visiting students, and he has mentored more than 25 undergraduate and graduate interns.

Samantha de Putron, who will serve as Assistant Director of University Programs, is a marine biologist and ecologist who focuses on corals; specifically, determining the role of thermal stress in driving acclimatization in corals, identifying the primary processes involved in coral growth, and monitoring the ecological processes of reef recovery and resilience. After finishing her doctorate in 2003 she worked for two years in the Education Department at BIOS, and currently teaches up to three courses annually. In addition she has mentored more than 35 undergraduate and graduate students during her career at BIOS.

Penelope Barnes, who served as the Director for University Programs at BIOS since 2013, is relocating to her home on Salt Spring Island, in British Columbia, Canada. She will resume her research career in coastal marine science, initially focusing on the effects of deep-water oyster farms on the coastal ocean carbon cycle. During her tenure at BIOS she helped secure grants totaling almost $1 million and worked to develop three new internship programs, among other accomplishments. She called her work at BIOS and her relationships with students and staff “extremely rewarding.”

“Penny’s determined efforts have improved and expanded the internship programs, expanded and enhanced BIOS course offerings, and deepened BIOS’s partnerships with universities in the U.K., U.S., and Canada while also creating new collaborations,” said BIOS President and CEO William Curry.