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2002
Volume 1, Number 1
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Four Maryland Students Receive Knauss Fellowships

Four University of Maryland graduate students, one in the Conservation Biology program and three in the Marine-Estuarine-Environmental Science (MEES) program, are recipients of Knauss Marine Policy Fellowships for 2002. Aleria Jensen is in the Conservation Biology program; David Scheurer, Stacy Swartwood and Lynn Takata are in the MEES program. The fellowship program, begun in 1979 and coordinated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) National Sea Grant Office, provides graduate students across the country with an opportunity to spend a year working with policy and science experts in Washington, D.C.

Photograph of Aleria Jensen Aleria Jensen will spend her fellowship year in NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service's Office of Protected Resources, Marine Mammal Division, under Division Chief Donna Wieting. She will work on large whale conservation and recovery management issues, focusing primarily on the North Atlantic Right whale. She will also help produce marine mammal outreach materials for the public. Jensen received her B.S. degree in biology and Russian from Macalester College in 1994. She spent the next several years working as a naturalist and educator for a marine conservation organization in Hawaii and for several ecotourism companies in Alaska. In 1999, she enrolled in the Sustainable Development and Conservation Biology graduate program at the University of Maryland and received her M.S. degree in May 2001.

Photograph of David Scheurer David Scheurer will work at the Center for Sponsored Coastal Ocean Research in NOAA's National Ocean Service in the Center. His focus will be an ongoing Gulf of Maine ECOHAB and GLOBEC initiatives project to transition research models to operational science-based policy tools. Scheurer received his B.S. degree in marine biology from Florida Institute of Technology in 1990. After graduation, he was a research assistant at the Wilmer Eye Institute in Baltimore and also finished an M.A. degree in environmental science at Johns Hopkins University in 1995. His coursework focused on policy issues related to the Chesapeake Bay. Scheurer next entered the MEES program to pursue a Ph.D. in ecology; he is currently working on his dissertation. His doctoral work involved using a spatially-explicit ecosystem model to investigate the relative importance of physical and biological processes in controlling and maintaining spatial patterns in pelagic environments.

Photograph of Stacy Swartwood Stacy Swartwood will be located at EPA's Office of Wetlands, Oceans, and Watersheds in the Wetlands Division. Her work will focus on the incorporation of wetland and water issues into smart growth planning and strategies for state wetland programs. Swartwood earned a B.A. in biology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. After graduation she worked for a public health consulting firm on a USAID family planning project, then became an independent consultant. She enrolled in the MEES program in 1999 and did her research on mangrove and salt marsh model ecosystems under the direction of Patrick Kangas. Stacy was a graduate assistant in the College of Life Science's Office of International Programs, then spent 2001 as a research assistant at Maryland Sea Grant College. She is currently writing her thesis and plans to graduate this December.

Photograph of Lynn Takata Lynn Takata will work in NOAA's National Ocean Service, with the National Marine Sanctuary Program's Scientific Support Team. During the year, she will help design and implement a sanctuary-wide scientific monitoring program and assist with the Baja to Bering expedition - a scientific cruise running through west coast sanctuaries. Lynn completed her B.S. in biology at the University of California, San Diego in 1995. She spent a year in the AmeriCorps in Northern California, working on salmon population surveys and environmental education. She moved to Maryland in 1997 to work with the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center's Marine Invasions group, where she helped with studies on the ecology of invasive marine organisms. In 1999, she entered the MEES program, where David Secor directs her research on comparing recruitment and growth patterns of young bluefish that use different Maryland nursery habitats. She plans to complete her thesis this fall.

Knauss Fellowships run from February 1 to January 31 and pay a stipend of $32,000. They are awarded with the help of Sea Grant programs across the nation. The application deadline for the Knauss Fellowship program is April 1 of the year preceding the fellowship year. For more information, visit the fellowship web site at Maryland, www.mdsg.umd.edu/Policy/knauss.html, or at the National Sea Grant office, www.nsgo.seagrant.org/Knauss.html. Those interested in applying for a fellowship for 2004 should contact Susan Leet directly at the Maryland Sea Grant office, 4321 Hartwick Road, Suite 300, University of Maryland, College Park, phone 301.403.4220, fax 301.403.4255, e-mail leet@mdsg.umd.edu.


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