COVID-19, the novel coronavirus we are currently dealing with, is impacting all of us and New Hampshire Sea Grant (NHSG) is no exception. Over the past couple of weeks, we have been working diligently to stay informed, understand, and adopt the increasingly more protective guidance coming from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the New Hampshire Governor’s office, and the University of New Hampshire. My primary focus during this time has been to keep my staff safe and to ensure the well-being of the public that we interact with regularly.
NHSG’s staff began working remotely last week. We have gained our footing in this new (temporary) work reality and are continuing to move forward. Our telework arrangements include access to email, video conferencing, and other remote-work tools. We have a strong and resilient team of dedicated professionals who are completely committed to the Sea Grant mission, and so we remain ‘open for business.’
I have asked the staff not only to consider how we can continue to support our constituents and deliver on our responsibilities to the State of New Hampshire through our existing programming, but also to identify new opportunities that engage our services and expertise. Our science, extension, education, and communications teams are well-positioned to help meet the needs of the moment in our four focus areas: Environmental Literacy and Workforce Development, Sustainable Fisheries and Aquaculture, Resilient Communities and Economies, and Healthy Coastal Ecosystems. For example, we will search for creative ways to help students and families learn more about marine science, to build environmental literacy that enables effective decision-making, to help the seafood industry adapt as restaurant demand slows, to ensure seafood safety for consumers, and to help communities respond to coastal resilience challenges.
I am confident that in typical New Hampshire fashion, we will come together, take advantage of our individual and collective strengths, and emerge from this stronger than ever. Please refer to our staff list and feel free to contact us via email: seagrant.unh.edu/staff. We are here for you.
Take care of yourselves and each other,
Director, New Hampshire Sea Grant
Here are a few important COVID-19 resources:
CDC guidance: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
NH guidance: www.nh.gov/covid19/
UNH guidance: www.unh.edu/main/coronavirus
NH Sea Grant staff: seagrant.unh.edu/staff