Deadline approaching for Sea Grant marine policy fellowship

January 25, 2018

By Cindie Powell

The Texas Sea Grant College Program is accepting applications through Friday, February 23, for the 2019 John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship.

The Knauss Fellowship, established in 1979, pairs highly qualified graduate students who have an interest in ocean, coastal and Great Lakes resources, and in the national policy decisions affecting those resources, with host offices in the legislative and executive branches of government. The yearlong paid fellowship is named for one of Sea Grant’s founders, former NOAA Administrator John A. Knauss.

“The Knauss Fellowship is an outstanding opportunity for students to be involved in substantive issues and have a first-hand look at the development of policy that affects our nation’s marine resources,” said Mia Zwolinski, Texas Sea Grant’s Research Coordinator.

Past Knauss Fellows from Texas have served with numerous National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) offices and also at the National Science Foundation, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and Congressional offices.

Texas’ 2017 Knauss Fellow, Matthew Dzaugis, worked at the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP), which is an interagency program that helps coordinate all of the climate change research done from 13 different government agencies and is mandated by congress to produce the National Climate Assessment no less than every four years.

“There is always a lot going on at the USGCRP, so I have the opportunity to participate in or at least sit in on a huge number of different interagency working groups or other cross-agency programs,” he says. “I have mostly been involved with the coordination and production of the National Climate Assessment. As a coordinator, I helped to manage and facilitate the writing of some of the chapters by the climate change experts who volunteered to be authors.”

Dzaugis served as the lead author of the Frequently Asked Questions chapter. “Not only was I writing the answers to the most prevalent climate change questions, but also communicating with a large list of technical experts who helped verify and fact check my answers. Overall it has been a huge privilege to be involved with this project.”

Two Texas doctoral students will begin their 2018 Knauss Fellowships in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 1. Emily K. Cira from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi will be working with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency National Nutrient Criteria Program. Andria Kay Salas from the University of Texas at Austin will serve her fellowship at the NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service Restoration Center.

More information, including a recording of a webinar of tips on developing a competitive application, is available at http://texasseagrant.org/funding/application-information/. Past Knauss Fellows from Texas have described some of their experiences in blog form at https://texasknaussfellows.wordpress.com/.

Contact Mia Zwolinski, Research Coordinator, at mzwolinski@tamu.edu or 979-458-0449 for additional information.

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Texas Sea Grant is a unique partnership that unites the resources of the federal government, the State of Texas and universities across the state to create knowledge, tools, products and services that benefit the economy, the environment and the citizens of Texas. It is administered through the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and is one of 33 university-based Sea Grant Programs around the country. Texas Sea Grant is a non-academic research center in the College of Geosciences at Texas A&M University. The program’s mission is to improve the understanding, wise use and stewardship of Texas coastal and marine resources.