I attended Purchase College for undergrad and got a BFA in Dramatic Writing. I decided to pursue a graduate degree in Marine Conservation and Policy because I have always had a deep passion for marine life and conservation but my strengths were more geared toward writing than science. This program at Stony Brook was the best of both worlds – I could gain the scientific knowledge I needed to hone in on the policy aspect and effectively communicate the science I’ve learned and, most importantly, make other people care about it too. I hope I could create a career working towards creating more sustainable aquaculture programs of mollusks and seaweed, creating better traceability practices for the fish we eat, and also closing the high seas to fishing in order to let fish stocks recover and to ensure that we can truly fish forever. My passion is geared towards what we eat- about a billion people depend on fish as their primary source of protein and most of the rest of us enjoy eating it regularly. I am really interested in how we create better public awareness about what fish we should be eating (lion fish!) and which we should avoid. I also feel that now is a great time to be asking “where did my seafood come from?” More and more people demand the answer of their produce and meat, why not the scallops at a restaurant? Better traceability practices create easier to manage fisheries and helps combat illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing as well. To me, it’s a really timely and important issue. My words of wisdom for anyone considering this program: I spent a lot of time convincing myself that I didn’t have the skills necessary or the ability to pursue a career in marine policy. I’m so glad that I was wrong and put in the effort to seek out this program and do what was necessary to apply. I couldn’t be happier that I have this opportunity.
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