[Coral-List] Research for a PhD program.

Emilie DASSIE e.dassie at hotmail.fr
Tue Feb 20 13:36:59 EST 2007

Dear coral listers;

My name is Emilie Dassie. I am a French undergraduate student currently 
enrolled in second year of masters ENVOLH (Oceanic Costal and Deep-sea 
Environment) at the University of Bordeaux 1. My scientific interest focuses 
primarily on the study of paleoclimates, and most notably the recent history 
of the El Niño Southern Oscillation using geochemical analyses of massive 
scleractinian corals.

I contact you regarding possible opportunities for graduate work in your 
laboratory on coral-based paleoclimate.

During my university training I did several courses with different 
approaches to this subject:

- During my first year of masters I worked under the supervision of Prof. 
Thierry Correge (Bordeaux 1 University) and Dr. Florence Le Cornec at the 
IRD (Institute of Research for Development; Bondy ; France). The subject of 
this study was to calibrate temperature tracers in a coral from Clipperton 
atoll (eastern tropical Pacific) and to determine the variations of ENSO in 
this area. I sampled corals with a mini-drill and made measurements of trace 
elements such as Strontium and Calcium on an Inductively Coupled Plasma - 
Mass Spectrometer (ICP-MS).
- From mid-July to August 2006 (6 weeks) I worked under the supervision of 
Dr. Mary Elliot (Edinburgh University) about the use of d18O as a tracer in 
a Tridacna derasa (giant clam) from New Caledonia. I also investigated the 
ENSO influence on the clam’s growth. During this period I used a micro-drill 
to sample the clam; I made measurement of stable isotopes with a Thermo 
Electron Delta + Advantage (Stable Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer) and a 
Kiel Carbonate Device III (preparation system) and measurement of trace 
elements with an Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometry 
- At the present time I am enrolled in a masters 2 research program under 
the supervision of Prof. Thierry Correge, Dr. Florence Le Cornec and Dr. 
Bruno Malaize dealing with the reconstitution of the environmental 
variability induced by ENSO and the movements of the Inter Tropical 
Convergence Zone (ITCZ) at Clipperton atoll during the Little Ice Age. 
During this study, I will conduct trace elements and stable isotopes 
measurements on the coral samples.

    From these various experiences, I gained a knowledge of different 
analytical techniques and learned to work in a research team. This training 
was further enhanced by my participation into a Summer School onboard the 
R.V. Marion Dufresne during the Marco Polo 2 scientific cruise in June/July 

I really enjoyed all these experiences and I am keen to pursue my training 
into paleoclimatology. The next step for me is to enrol in a PhD program, 
preferably in a foreign country to increase my experience and learn about 
different methods of work, and to improve my English.

I am looking forward to receiving any proposal or indications that could 
help me to find a PhD program related to my research interests. Should you 
need reference letters, you can contact:

Thierry Correge,           t-correge at epoc.u-bordeaux1.fr
Florence Le Cornec       lecornec at bondy.ird.fr
Mary Elliot                    Mary.elliot at ed.ac.uk

Best wishes

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