Research & Collaborations

The Goshen College Marine Biology program continues to grow as a result of the collaborative work from numerous faculty from various institutions.  Based on their long-term commitment to marine science and their outstanding contributions to the Goshen College program, the following individuals and their institutions have developed a formalized Memorandum of Understandings (MOU) with Goshen College and thereby serve as members of the J.N. Roth Marine Biology Advisory Council.  If you or your institution has interest in research at the facility, questions can be directed to Dr. Ryan Sensenig of Goshen College –

From left to right: Dr. Tony Swinehart, Mrs. Suzy Bishop (wife of C. Franklin Bishop), GC President Dr. James Brenneman, Professor Emeritus Dr. Jonathan Roth, Carl Weaver, and Dr. Ryan Sensenig


Marine Biology Advisory Council

Carl Weaver Goshen High School

Carl Weaver graduated from Goshen College in 1969 and currently teaches Biology at Goshen High School where he has developed a strong Marine Biology program that is in its 40th year.  Carl and his colleagues from Goshen High School have been ardent supporters of the GC Marine Biology program and have helped improve the facility through annual work-trips to complete various renovations.  Goshen High School uses the J.N. Roth facility every April for their student trips.

Von Schrock Central Christian High School

Central Christian High School (Ohio) brings a group of high school students to the J.N. Roth Marine Biology center each spring under the leadership of Von Schrock.  Von teaches Biology, Chemistry, and Environmental Science at Central Christian and graduated from Goshen College (class of 1988) having studied Biology under the mentorship of Dr. Jonathan Roth, retired professor of Biology and founder of the Marine Biology program at GC.

Dr. Duane Kauffmann, Professor Emeritus, Goshen College

The Marine Biology program has benefited greatly from Dr. Kauffmann’s assistance in teaching, research, and program development for more than 30 years.  Duane, retired professor of Pscyhology, has developed a number of pictorial identification keys for use by Goshen College Marine Biology students.  Several of these keys are now available for use by others who might find them of help in their taxonomic work with the plants and animals found in the shallow waters of the Florida Keys.  Comments, questions, and/or corrections to these materials may be directed to Dr. Kauffmann at Goshen College (

Dr. Anthony Swinehart Hillsdale College

Dr. Swinehart graduated from Goshen College in 1992 and currently teaches Biology at Hillsdale College.  He has been bringing Hillsdale students to the J.N. Roth Marine Biology station for more than 10 years and got his start in Marine Biology under the mentorship of Dr. Jonathan Roth, after which the facility was named.  Dr. Swinehart has research interests in paleoecology and aquatic ecology and has contributed to the marine program in many ways including: donation of specimens, renovation and maintenance of the facility, and long-term monitoring of Zane Grey Creek.

Dr. Mark Butler Old Dominion University

Dr. Butler is a marine ecologist from Old Dominion University who has been working in the Keys for many years.  His team has various research projects based at the J.N. Roth Marine Biology station as listed below.  ODU has made valuable facility improvements to the station during the 2 year collaboration with Goshen.

  • The behavioral, ecological, and fishery effects of a pathogenic, viral disease in the Caribbean Spiny Lobster
  • Larval connectivity of spiny lobster in Mesoamerica and the Caribbean
  • Environmental and fishery effects on dinoflagellate parasite dynamics in blue crabs
  • The ecology of shallow, hard-bottom communities with an emphasis on sponges
  • The role of spotted spiny lobster and long-spined sea urchins on coral patch reef communities
  • Interactions between the Caribbean Reef Octopus and the Caribbean Spiny Lobster
  • Reproductive ecology of spiny lobsters and the potential for sperm-limited reproductive success in fished populations

Facility Upgrades and Improvements

The J.N. Roth Marine Biology station has benefited from ongoing improvements and facility renovations made by collaborators and volunteers.  ODU has built an outdoor wet-lab; GHS installed lab bench tops, shelves, and cabinets; GHS has helped install new laminate flooring and tile in the living areas, Hillsdale has donated a tool cabinet, speciment storage, and routine maintenance.