Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution sits in a pretty little village on the lower tip of Cape Cod in Massachusetts named Woods Hole
Woods Hole (pop. < 5000 k and quaint as hell) contains HQ or sizable branches of several research organizations—4 or 5 of which at least are known in most corners of the world by someone: WHOI, Marine Biological Laboratory, USGS, NOAA, and the National Academy of Science. There is also a substantial US Coast Guard base, the Woods Hole Research Center, and the Sea Education Association. A noder out there with more of the facts oughta crank out a more complete Woods Hole node to cover this amazing little place.
In brief, WHOI is the largest independent oceanographic research organization in the world. Home of the Alvin (of Titanic, Mid-Atlantic Ridge, and H-bomb fame) several other subs and ROVs, and 3 or 4 ships to run them around the world on. Housed on two campuses, the Institution has several departments including Biology, Chemistry, Geology, Ocean Physics and Engineering and probably a couple more. WHOI works closely with the NSF, the Office of Naval Research, NASA, and other oceanographic institutions. Although primarily a research organization, WHOI awards the Ph.D independently and in conjunction with its education partner MIT to a very small number of students each year.