Getting to Know More About Ocean Sciences Graduate Students

Jul 1st, 2014

Danielle Nichols

Getting to Know More About Ocean Sciences Graduate Students

Michael Piersiak, MSc Candidate

What do you study at Memorial?
I study the ecology of anthropogenic impact of environmental predictability and the resulting effects on the ecology of predator-prey interactions.

Who is your supervisor?
My supervisor is Dr. Mark Abrahams

What is your favorite aspect of your studies?
My favorite aspect of my studies is being able to directly examine the influences of human activities on a broad ecological scale. As human activities are an ever-imposing threat to many ecosystems, it is important to understand the manner in which they are effecting these ecosystems and the possible means of mitigating any negative impacts. 

Why did you choose to study at Memorial?
I chose to come to Memorial both because I had friends currently in the graduate program and because my grandfather had been coming to Newfoundland since the 1960's and I wanted to experience the place I had only heard stories about.

Where are you from?
I am from Boston, Massachusetts. Go Bruins!

What did you do before coming to MUN?
Before coming to MUN I worked for a shark research program in Eleuthera, Bahamas where I studied the behavioural ecology of a variety of different shark species.  I met former masters student Ian Hamilton there who convinced me that I should attend Memorial.

What are you interests outside of school?
Fishing and hockey. I love all kinds of fishing, particularly spear fishing and ice fishing, as well as reliving the glory days at friday night hockey games.

What's your idea of a good time?
I love being out on the water with no cars, street lights, or human noise hopefully catching the biggest fish in the pond.

Tell us something interesting about you? I have been free diving with a wild adult male tiger shark measuring in at 3.9 meters! 


Ocean Sciences

230 Elizabeth Ave, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1B 3X9

Postal Address: P.O. Box 4200, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1C 5S7

Tel: (709) 864-8000