The RENCI Engagement Center at ECU operated from 2007-2013. This website is an archive of the research and engagement activity over those years. Several of our projects continue at ECU. For instance, see the NC Coastal Atlas ( for current news and information. This site is no longer being updated. Parties interested in these projects and ongoing related activities may contact Dr. Tom Allen, past Director of RENCI@ECU at



The custom-outfitted ROVER (RENCI Outreach Vehicle for Education and Research) is a versatile tool for research, education, and emergency response. Its onboard technological equipment includes a server loaded with GIS and other software, an array of laptops, a generator, and a comprehensive radio system with two antennas capable of receiving and broadcasting at any frequency, from almost any location, even under emergency conditions. Its comfortable interior features desk space, seating, lighting, and built-in equipment storage.

These features, along with connections with emergency managers across eastern North Carolina, ensure that the ROVER will be an integral first-response vehicle in the event of a hurricane or other coastal emergency.

In calmer times, the ROVER serves research and outreach functions. Several of RENCI at ECU's research teams use it for field work, and Michelle Covi brings programs on weather, ecological awareness, and emergency preparedness to schools throughout the region.

Michelle Covi preps the interior of the ROVER.

An open access panel on the ROVER.