Focus on the coast
Coastlines are changing fast, and management practices aren’t keeping up, said Anne Kapuscinski, professor of environmental studies and director of the new Coastal Science and Policy Program. “There’s real urgency now. The harmful impacts of climate change are already being felt in coastal areas worldwide.”
Based at UCSC’s Coastal Science Campus on Monterey Bay, the two-year master’s degree program aims to help students develop innovative strategies for coastal conservation and sustainable use management. The interdisciplinary curriculum emphasizes mentorship, collaboration, and leadership training. In addition to workshops and specialized coursework designed for the program, each student will complete a major project working closely with an outside partner such as a research institution, NGO, private company, or government agency. The interests of the inaugural class include Caribbean manatee protection, climate change insurance risk analysis, Chinese aquaculture management, and local grassroots watershed management.
“The program is exceeding my expectations,” said student Mali’o Kodis. “One of the greatest achievements—and challenges—of this program is addressing the wide array of interests, backgrounds, and unique experiences within our cohort of 10 incredible young leaders.”
“They help each other but they also push each other,” said Kapuscinski, whose own research focuses on increasing the sustainability of aquaculture, the world’s fastest growing food sector. “It’s all aimed at informing policy and real action on the ground.”