To recognize Donna Broadbent’s extraordinary commitment and service to SERSTN and to honor her memory and legacy to the Southeast Regional Sea Turtle Meeting, The Donna Broadbent Memorial Student Travel Grant has been established. Donna held a particular fondness for the student attendees so these grants will be awarded to students who not only excel in their research areas, but who also exemplify the spirit of Donna’s commitment and service.
Donna was not working actively on the front lines of conservation policy, innovative field research, or ecological syntheses, but she was the unifying element for almost every major sea turtle meeting held in North America in the past decade and a half. As event coordinator for the International Sea Turtle Society and the Southeast Regional Sea Turtle Network, Donna planned our conferences and managed the meeting venues. She quickly engaged us with her incredible level of organization, professionalism, and initiative. In her years of working with our community, she learned a lot about us as individuals and as a group, and she developed a deep fondness for our organization’s history, culture, and goals. This affection translated into an exceptional level of care and attention at our meetings and her commitment to making sure that every attendee had a wonderful and memorable experience. Donna’s behind-the-scenes magic and her service, positivity, and friendliness will be long remembered by the entire sea turtle community. Donna was instrumental in the development of the first SERSTM and every one thereafter, including the 2022 meeting. Her legacy will live on through each symposium that we hold and attend.
When submitting an abstract, students wishing to be considered for the Donna Broadbent Memorial Student Travel Grant will be asked to include a brief statement (150-200 words) describing their commitment to service during SERSTM and their personal need for travel support. Statements should also address how the student’s attendance will benefit the sea turtle community and how they will benefit personally from being supported by the travel grant. Among the pool of accepted abstracts, the selection of travel grant recipients will be made based on (1) the quality of their abstract, (2) the content of this personal statement, and (3) their distance traveled to SERSTM (in the case of a tie). Students awarded a travel grant will receive 3 nights of hotel accommodation during SERSTM and will be expected to volunteer a minimum of 6 hrs during the meeting.
To submit an application, students should create an account for serstn.org, register for the meeting, and submit an abstract. Applications for the travel grant will be submitted during abstract submission. Please submit any questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.