The WHOI is a private, nonprofit research and higher education facility dedicated to the study of marine science and engineering. Its agenda includes: geological activity deep within the earth; plant, animal, and microbial populations and their interactions in the ocean; coastal erosion; ocean circulation; ocean pollution; and global climate change. Established in 1930 in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, it is the largest independent oceanographic research institution in the U.S., with staff and students numbering about 1,000. WHOI maintains unparalleled depth and breadth of expertise across a range of oceanographic research areas. Institution scientists and engineers work collaboratively within and across six research departments to advance knowledge of the global ocean and its fundamental importance to other planetary systems. At the same time, they also train future generations of ocean scientists and address problems that have a direct impact in efforts to understand and manage critical marine resources.