Marine Biology

From the very beginning of your academic career at UMM, you will work closely with your instructors both in the laboratory and in the field. We offer unique opportunities for student – centered undergraduate research, examining local marine organisms and their ecosystems. Our faculty specialize in teaching outdoors to enhance hands-on learning. You will learn about the biology and ecology of marine plants and animals inhabiting oceans, rocky shores, tidal pools, marshes, mudflats, and other marine environments. From the small to the large, from algae to marine mammals, UMM’s program in Marine Biology offers you a hands-on approach to the fascinating field of marine science. These experiences will provide you with skills highly valued by employers.

In addition to coursework, we offer you practical, work-based learning experiences. In particular, UMM has an on-going partnership with the Downeast Institute for Applied Marine Research and Education (DEI), where you can conduct research in the area of shellfish and finfish research. The Downeast Institute also serves as UMM’s marine field station located 25 miles west of campus in the island community of Beals, about 30 minutes from the Machias campus. The field station is immediately adjacent to the ocean, overlooking a working waterfront with variety of marine habitats within a quarter of a mile of the field station.

UMM is uniquely located at the headwaters of the Machias River estuary on the Down East coast of Maine. Far from the bright lights of the city, Machias is an ideal location for the naturalist. On the shore of the spectacular Gulf of Maine and the nearby Bay of Fundy, the ocean will be your classroom. We are minutes away from rocky shores, mudflats, salt marshes and sand beaches.

In addition to our own aquaculture laboratory, we are a short drive from state-of-the-art mariculture facilities for finfish and shellfish. Our NSF-funded Geographic Information Systems lab allows you to gain skills at mapping and track biological phenomena that are of research interest. Whether you pursue a career in marine education, fisheries science, aquaculture, or decide to continue your studies for a graduate degree, we will help prepare you for a lifetime in Marine Sciences.

Careers in Marine Biology

UMM’s Marine Biology program can prepare you for careers in such areas as:

Marine Education

  • Classroom teaching
  • Interpreter/naturalist for aquaria, museums, tourist vessels, recreation or conservation areas
  • Extension/outreach and environmental education

Fishery Science

  • Biologist for federal, state, or local marine natural resource agencies
  • Biologist for government, private or non-profit consulting firms
  • Resource Management


  • Laboratory technician
  • Hatchery employee
  • Shellfish, finfish, or seaweed farmer

Degree Earned

Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology

Program Courses & Requirements


Contact Us

Tora Johnson
Associate Professor of Geographic Information Systems
223 Torrey Hall