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Since 2011, UNC’s Center for Galapagos Studies (CGS) has been a hub of collaborative research and education spanning many disciplines. With your support we can expand our research footprint, offer more Carolina students opportunities to gain an impactful global experience, and continue to tackle the pressing issues of our time. We currently have three areas of pressing need and value donations at any level!

blue-footed booby in flight
Four people in scuba diving equipment underwater, holding up a UNC-Chapel Hill flag
Student holds up six small, capped test tubes filled with sand-like material

1. Enhancing Darwin’s Living Laboratory

The GSC’s Microbiology & Genetics Lab requires updated equipment to allow more researchers and students to conduct cutting-edge science such as DNA sequencing of endemic species and ongoing water quality monitoring that traces environmental contaminants and their impact on both animal and human health. This lab is also home to the first comprehensive Galapagos Biobank, preserving the genetic resources of existing biodiversity. Your support is ultimately helping to protect and conserve the Galapagos for generations to come!

2. Providing Global Student Experiences

Supporting student travel opportunities opens eager minds to new ideas and gives our students the freedom to explore complex questions about the nature of our world. Carolina undergraduate and graduate students have opportunities to learn in this unique ecosystem, flowing seamlessly between classroom, field, and lab. Your support will enable more students to have a transformative and global experience while simultaneously advancing science and conservation efforts.

3. Tackling Global Challenges

Seed grant funding is needed to allow UNC researchers to test their big ideas in Galapagos before pursuing larger grants from outside sources. These ideas address issues such as climate change, food security, water quality, sustainable tourism, and other global challenges. Previous seed grants have gone on to secure $1.2 million in funding to have an even greater impact on both local and global communities. Your support enables UNC researchers to choose Galapagos to test their hypothesis and gather integral data to tackle global challenges.

“What others see only as a tube with some liquid in it — for us, that’s gold. We see the value behind this tiny little tube.”
— Diana Pazmiño, Biobank Manager, GSC

“Working here at the Galapagos Science Center is wonderful. It is an environment where I feel I am challenging myself and I am growing as a student, as a scientist, and as a person. I feel like one of the luckiest marine biologists of all because I am able to work in this paradise doing something that I love.”
— Isabel Silva-Romero, PhD student at UNC Department of Biology

100+ ongoing interdisciplinary research topics

200+ UNC undergrads have visited the GSC for research and educational opportunities

2500+ community members impacted annually through local outreach activities


Watch the video below to hear firsthand how your donations can make a huge impact on our research community: