Island Institute Fellow Alumnus,
Jes Stevens

One of the very first Island Institute fellows, Jes Stevens moved to Monhegan in 2000, and her fellowship lasted until 2002. She has lived there ever since.

Like many Island Institute fellowships, Jes’s impacted her host community in a variety of ways and featured several projects related to marine science and education including:

  • Conducting research on the migration of juvenile lobsters through dives and trap surveys.
  • Working part time in the island schoolhouse, helping with science lessons.
  • Designing an underwater biology exhibit at the Monhegan Museum.

“As an Island Institute Fellow, I learned how to work independently and I got a variety of experiences—from marine science field work to teaching.”  – Jes Stevens, Island Institute Fellow Alumnus


Jes grew up on Isle au Haut, and had a deep connection with the island communities of Maine before joining Island Institute as a fellow. She quickly integrated into the Monhegan community and focused much of her fellowship on surveying juvenile lobsters as part of a collaboration between Island Institute and Bigelow Laboratory. This project required her to spend time aboard each of the Monhegan fishermen’s boats, and she eventually married one of those fishermen.

Jes also worked in the island schoolhouse supporting the teacher with lessons. She has raised a son who attended the Monhegan School and she currently serves as chair of the school board. She is also Deputy Emergency Management Director for Monhegan Plantation and Operations Manager for the Monhegan First Aid Station and responds to 911 emergencies on the island. In the years following her fellowship, she has worked with other Island Institute Fellows on the island on projects ranging from supporting teaching kids about energy efficiency to cataloguing the island’s history in the community cemetery.

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