After 32 years in the School of Oceanography, Shelly Carpenter is retiring!

Shelly in Antartica

Shelly has served the College of the Environment with a commitment and competence that unambiguously deserves recognition. She is a dedicated change-maker, having transformed the University in her push for Green Labs. As a scientist, she is a walking repository of knowledge and know-how, as well as a skilled mentor. And, far beyond what is required, Shelly has built an environment of safety, caring, and community that enriches the School of Oceanography and the College.

As the manager of Jody Deming's Lab in Oceanography, she is a keystone of the School and its collaborating units, supporting its science and people with happy dedication.   Shelly has taken part in every aspect of an oceanographic research lab over her many years from mentoring to experimentation, data analysis, lab maintenance, and of course heading up sampling expeditions.  She serves as an indispensable scientific resource across Campus. She offers her knowledge of not only microbiology, oceanography, and polar sciences but also chemical safety, University instrumentation, and human connections. 

But beyond her scientific excellence, it is an unwavering and happy altruism that distinguishes Shelly from her colleagues. While Shelly serves as Deming Lab manager, in reality she acts as an advisor in field work and microbiological studies for labs in the College and across the world. Shelly has established herself as a nexus for collaboration, improving the quality and accelerating the pace of research in the department. These collaborations and sense of action also provide networks to the wide diversity of high school, undergraduate, and graduate students Shelly has mentored.  Congratulations Shelly!


  • “Along with going above and beyond to help me identify and locate the resources and procedures needed to complete my senior thesis, the respect and life that she brought into her teaching helped give me a taste for how enjoyable research could be.” 
  • “My research could not have been accomplished without her extraordinary generosity of time and expertise, but as a student in a small lab, it is Shelly’s continual and enthusiastic inclusion of all students that I most appreciate.”
  • “While this may sound cliche, she really is the glue that holds the 3rd floor of MSB together. Her laughter is infectious and I'm always glad when she is around. Our community on the third floor of MSB is strong and a lot of that is because of Shelly. We are really lucky to have her around!”    
  • “She has made remarkable and sustained contributions to the work and advancement of faculty, staff and students in the School of Oceanography.”