Two University of Delaware graduate students in marine studies -- Alison Sipe and Dosoo Jang -- are getting ready to dive into ocean policy-making efforts in the nation's capital. The students are among 30 finalists, from a field of 55 students nominated nationwide, who have been selected as National Sea Grant Fellows.
Sponsored by the National Sea Grant College Program in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the fellowship program was established in 1979 to provide a unique educational experience to students who have an interest in marine resources and the national policy decisions affecting them. The program matches outstanding graduate students with host agencies in the federal government, offering the scholars a paid, year-long experience working on marine issues in Washington, DC.
"The Sea Grant Fellows Program is highly competitive, attracting some of the brightest students in the nation," says Dr. Carolyn A. Thoroughgood, director of the University's Sea Grant College Program and dean of the College of Marine Studies. "Alison and Dosoo are deeply committed to bridging the gap between marine science and policy for the benefit of the environment and the public. As Sea Grant Fellows, they will have an invaluable opportunity to contribute to ocean policy-making efforts on the national level."
Sipe will be working at the National Science Foundation in the Division of Ocean Sciences, where she looks forward to gaining an insider's view of the grant proposal and review process that drives basic research in marine science.
A master's degree candidate in marine biology-biochemistry, Sipe has assisted her adviser, Dr. Craig Cary, on a Sea Grant marine biotechnology project aimed at finding an antifoulant to repel the shipworm. This wood borer, which is actually a clam, feasts its way through millions of dollars in ships, pilings, and other coastal structures each year. In 1997, Sipe received the National Shellfisheries Association's Student Poster Award for her description of the research and its accomplishments.
Sipe also has undertaken a number of public education efforts, ranging from tutoring high-school students in math and chemistry, to devising hands-on science activities for UD's Coast Day festival. She is a native of Wilmington, Del.
Dosoo Jang has been assigned to the International Programs Office in NOAA's National Ocean Service, where he will help implement bilateral activities between the United States and China and Japan in coastal environmental science and technology.
A doctoral candidate in marine policy, Jang has special interests in integrated coastal management, which encourages the incorporation of science into the policy-making process and views the marine environment as a whole rather than as a set of unrelated resources. Last year, Jang worked as an integrated coastal management consultant at the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). He received NOAA's Ocean and Coastal Management Award for excellence in graduate study in 1997.
A native of South Korea, he makes his home in Ellicott City, Md., with his wife and two daughters.
The 30 students selected for the 1999 Sea Grant Fellows Program represent the largest incoming class ever. The University of Delaware Sea Grant College Program is one of only seven programs to be represented by more than one Sea Grant Fellow. The students' year on Capitol Hill begins February 1.