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Interview with Dr. Frank Quinn

table of contents
Introduction/About GLERL
Dr. Quinn's area of expertise
The changing lake levels
Advice for students
All about the lakes!
Conclusion and more information

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Interview with Dr. Frank Quinn
Senior Hydrologist
Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
March 23, 2001

Tell me a little about GLERL
and what kind of research occurs here.

Frank Quinn The Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL) is part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the same folks who bring you the weather everyday. GLERL was founded in 1974 and replaced the Lake Survey District of the Army Corps of Engineers, which had been around since the 1840's. Researchers were also recruited from the International Field Year on the Great Lakes, which took place on Lake Ontario in the early 1970's and was the largest scientific program ever run on the Great Lakes.

GLERL is a broad-based interdisciplinary laboratory. The researchers here study all aspects of the Great Lakes environment, such as the entire food chain from bacteria to fish, waves, ice, current, and water levels. Our recent focus has been the potential impacts of climate change.

How many researchers are at GLERL?
GLERL has around 75 researchers and support staff in its Ann Arbor, Michigan, office and the Lake Michigan Field Station in Muskegon, Michigan. Most scientists are working for the U.S. federal government, but many are part of the Cooperative Institute for Limnology and Ecosystems Research here in Ann Arbor.

Our researchers have varied backgrounds. We have zooplankton biologists, hydrologists, atmospheric scientists, remote sensing specialists, oceanographers, geochemists and nuclear physicists on staff!

In a broad-based lab, everyone learns from each other, and you have a real synergy from people working together in different fields to really understand the Great Lakes system. They then can use that understanding to help create better resource policies for the Great Lakes.

In an effort to highlight Great Lakes careers for students interested in pursuing a career on the lakes, TEACH will be conducting interviews with professionals from around the region. Contact us if you would like to make a suggestion!

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