MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. (WNCT) – The UNC Institute of Marine Sciences is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year with a new eye-catching addition.

A mural is being added to their building in Morehead City to draw people into the community. Rick Luettich is the director at the institute. He said the mural has been one of the highlights of his 35 years working there.

“The institute’s mission is to serve the citizens of North Carolina, and particularly Eastern North Carolina, through our education, our research, and our outreach,” said Luettich.

The mural incorporates all the different types of work they do, like coastal resiliency, microbiology and water quality.

“This really is a great way we thought to tell the story of what goes on behind the walls here,” said Luettich.

Muralist and director of NC Public Art, Max Dowdle, highlights the breathtaking views of the Carolina coast. 

“You can see there are these jagged lines, that’s the coast of the area right around here, that are taken from the sound and from the Outer Banks,” said Dowdle about the mural.

He also said it’s one of his favorite murals because of all the help from the community.

“Between the people honking, and just yelling out, and coming into the parking lot here, probably at least 100 or so, which has been awesome,” said Dowdle.

One volunteer, Carmen Maddrey, worked on the mural over the last few days. She said she loves to see faces light up when people see their work.

“I want to be part of the history of this area since we live here,” said Maddrey. “People have just talked about it and talked about it. So when you come down Highway 70 going downtown, it makes this whole area stand out.”

Dowdle said he hopes his work will be finishing up soon and encourages everyone to see the vivid mural.