Marine mammals are often considered sensitive indicators of oceanic ecosystems and seawater quality. In the Salish Sea of the northeastern Pacific Ocean, fungal infections classified as mucormycoses are increasingly reported in cetaceans such as harbor porpoises and the endangered population of Southern Resident Killer Whales. One approach in understanding the epizootiology of this disease is to assess the distribution of the fungal pathogens in the marine waters inhabited by these mammals. The intern will be involved in molecular identification of fungi from affected animals, developing and testing a molecular assay to detect the pathogens, and applying the detection assay to tissues and environmental samples. By the end of the internship, the student will have experience in conducting an epizootiological investigation and will have improved understanding of molecular detection of pathogens. The research environment includes a group of scientists with expertise in microbiology, toxic microalgae, and molecular biology.