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Bigelow Lab Gets Over $6 Million in Gifts

Two gifts of just over three million dollars each will allow Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences to break ground on a new residence hall for students and visiting scientists.

The project will help the lab further the educational part of its mission.

Besides conducting its own research, Bigelow Lab offers an expanding array of workshops and courses.

There’s an ocean science research course in May for high school juniors from Maine.

Other offerings include a semester-in-residence program for undergraduates from Colby College and weeklong classes for graduate students and professionals.

Graham Shimmeild, Bigelow’s executive director, says the new 32-bed residence hall overlooking the Damariscotta River will help further the lab’s educational mission.

“Having our own facilities on the campus … they can be very close to the research and also close to the water,” he says. “And really have a major opportunity for them to engage in the life of Bigelow Laboratory while they’re studying here.”

The Harold Alfond Foundation has awarded a $3.1 million grant, which will be matched by an anonymous donor.

Shimmeild says the project will also increase opportunities for scientists from other parts of the country, and abroad, to come to Maine to collaborate with colleagues at Bigelow.