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School of Ocean Science and Engineering

Student Spotlight: Alfonso Cohuo

Photo of Alfonso Cohuo holding fish

Degree path: M.S. 
Course of study: Coastal Sciences


I have always loved animals in general since I was young, but I always found marine animals even more interesting. I was in an entomology lab in Dallas, Texas where I identified local ant species, but I knew I wanted something different.

I moved to Corpus Christi to pursue a marine biology degree, where I was a McNair Scholar. Thankfully, the McNair group enabled me to work in an ecology lab where I was able to gain experience in processing fish and learning more about fish ecology. I did a bit of otolith chemistry and I eventually moved on to Stable Isotope Analysis, which I found so fascinating.

Working in that lab opened the doors for me to begin thinking about what really interested me. Outside my current research, I am interested in using biochemical markers for food web dynamics and migration in fish.

I think to enjoy a higher degree in the sciences in general you need to be ok with being wrong or simply not knowing why something happens. The process of gaining new knowledge through scientific research involves being wrong and that’s something you have to be comfortable with.

Why I chose USM

I heard good things about USM from my Ichthyology TA in A&M Corpus Christi and my project would let me do SIA on a threatened species.

Future Plans

I plan on working towards a Ph.D after I graduate and I would like to become an Associate Professor. I enjoy teaching a lot and I would like that to be my focus with some research as well.


Learn more about the Coastal Sciences program