Dear Whitman Scientists,

I hope that you, your families, and colleagues are safe and healthy.  I am writing to update you on the Marine Biological Laboratory’s plans for the Whitman Center program during the COVID-19 crisis.  At the moment, the MBL is open and research staff are active, although at reduced levels on campus.  If circumstances force us to close, we will maintain a small number of essential staff to care for animals and essential equipment, but it will not be possible to conduct laboratory research. All buildings are locked and a 2020 MBL ID is necessary to gain access to campus facilities.

While it is impossible to know what will happen in the next few months, it is clear that everyone’s research program will be severely impacted.

  • If you prefer to defer your Whitman Center lab rental to 2021, you may do so at this time. You will need to re-register, as usual, by December 15, 2020. Your current registration will be cancelled and you will not incur rental or housing charges for this year.
  • If you plan to come to the MBL during the 2020 season, we may need to delay your arrival depending on circumstances.  Scientists who have registered to arrive in April or May will need to postpone their arrival to at least June as all on-campus facilities (housing and dining services specifically) will be shut down during that time.
  • ***Please notify your lab assistants, associates and grad students of any changes in plans with regard to your time at MBL (ie: new dates, cancellations etc).***

We will need to work together on arrangements that ensure the health and safety of your group and the rest of the MBL community.  It is likely that not all research facilities and services will be available, and MBL dining and housing may also be affected.  The situation may change quickly at any time before or after your arrival on campus.  We therefor ask for your patience and understanding as we navigate these unprecedented circumstances.

Please communicate your plans to Dana Mock-Muñoz de Luna ( as soon as possible.  We look forward to hearing from you and wish you all the best during these challenging times.

With kind regards,

Nipam Patel
MBL Director