A new master’s program in Marine Conservation and Policy will be offered by the School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences (SoMAS) beginning with the fall 2010 semester. The 12-month interdisciplinary program is designed to give students a broad base of scientific knowledge about marine ecosystems; enhanced communication skills; and perspective on the economic, legal, and/or policy challenges of marine conservation.
“Our goal is to provide students from a variety of academic backgrounds with an understanding of contemporary marine conservation and policy issues,” said Program Director Robert Cerrato. “Graduates of this program should have the advanced training and broad skill-set needed to compete effectively for marine conservation positions that are not research-based.”
The Graduate Program in Marine Conservation and Policy balances coursework in marine science, marine conservation biology, communications, and quantitative analysis with classes in marine management, economics, policy, or law. Through an exciting new collaboration with the School of Journalism, the program aims to equip students with the communications skills necessary to connect scientists with stakeholders and to make research results understandable to the general public.
Students will have the opportunity to learn from SoMAS faculty who are world-renowned experts in marine conservation, including researchers from the Institute for Ocean Conservation Science, which became a part of SoMAS in 2008. Each student’s course of study culminates with an in-depth capstone study or internship resulting in the production of an original synthesis paper based on a consequential topic in marine conservation and policy.
“From oil spills to overfishing to the consequences of global warming, our oceans are in peril,” said Cerrato. “We hope that this program will train the next generation of ocean advocates and guardians who will build the framework for a smarter ocean policy.”
The Program is accepting applications through the middle of July for enrollment in fall 2010.