Managed by the NOAA Office for Coastal Management, the Coastal Management Fellowship offers on-the-job training for postgraduate students in coastal resource management and policy. Candidates are matched with state and jurisdictional coastal zone programs to work on select projects chosen by NOAA. New Hampshire Sea Grant recruits and nominates students attending New Hampshire universities.

This year, New Hampshire Sea Grant candidate Emma Cutler matched with the Wisconsin Coastal Management Program to apply geospatial technologies and resources, developed by Wisconsin’s partners, NOAA Digital Coast, and others, to Great Lakes coastal hazard issues, culminating in a self-guided project to develop a multi-hazard vulnerability viewer. Her fellowship project is titled, “Linking Great Lakes Professional and Geospatial Networks to Promote Resilient Coastal Communities,” and will strengthen the ability of coastal communities to adapt to and mitigate coastal hazards. Emma comes to the Coastal Management Fellowship from the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth College in Hanover, NH, where she recently defended her PhD in engineering sciences related to climate change adaptation and resilience planning. In addition, she holds a bachelor's degree in environmental studies and math from Bowdoin University. Emma will start her fellowship with WCMP in August.

To be considered for the fellowship, students submit application materials to their state Sea Grant programs, which nominate up to three candidates to NOAA. For the 2019-2021 fellowship class, NOAA’s Office for Coastal Management received 35 applications from 21 Sea Grant programs across the country. Four criteria determined the selection of 12 finalists: academic performance and the diversity of educational background; endorsement by the applicant’s Sea Grant director; support from two letters of recommendation; and content of the applicant’s goal statement. A workshop to match finalists with fellowship hosts took place in Charleston, SC from April 29-May 3, 2019. At the conclusion of the matching workshop, six fellows were ultimately selected and placed with host organizations. In addition to the Wisconsin Coastal Management Program, coastal programs in Minnesota/Lake Superior, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, and New Hampshire will host 2019-2021 fellows.

Emma Culter with Jim and Hayden, fellowship mentors

Emma Cutler (right) with fellowship mentors, Jim Giglierano, Wisconsin Land Information Program (left), and Hayden Elza, University of Wisconsin State Cartographer’s Office (middle).
Photo thanks to Margaret Allen/NOAA Office for Coastal Management.