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Four specialists join the New York Sea Grant


Four new extension specialists have joined New York Sea Grant (NYSG) in its mission of “Bringing Science to the Shore” as part of a collaborative program between Cornell and the State University of New York.

NYSG Specialists work with faculty and researchers from Cornell, SUNY Colleges and Universities, and other New York State academic institutes and partner agencies to develop and deliver integrated research, science, education and extension services that respond to timely and high priority challenges and opportunities related to New York’s freshwater and marine environments, economies and communities.

“The New York Sea Grant resources are designed to make the latest scientific information available to help New York’s riverside communities and citizens strengthen coastal economies and quality of life,” said Katherine Bunting-Howarth, Deputy Director of Cornell Cooperative Extension and Associate Director of NYSG, Ph.D., JD

Recently hired Coastal Resilience Extension Specialist Katie Graziano (’11) works with communities, agencies and academic partners on coastal management issues, including the impact of flooding. She recently shared details about her work on the “Extension Out Loud” podcast.

“As sea levels rise, the research and extension of the New York Sea Grant will provide scientific information to help those who live and adapt to chronic flooding,” says Graziano.

With New York’s potential to sustainably develop aquaculture – the managed culture of fish, crustaceans, molluscs and aquatic plants – the NYSG hired its first aquaculture specialist in September 2020. Since joining team, Emma Forbes began to build a professional network for the New York Navy. and Great Lakes aquaculture producers, wholesalers, researchers, regulators, economists and others.

“New York aquaculture producers see a bright future for the managed culture of fish, crustaceans, molluscs and aquatic plants, if they are given the right support,” says Forbes.

Wild fisheries are the strong point of Stacy Furgal, NYSG’s Great Lakes Fisheries and Ecosystem Health Specialist. Furgal is developing public education materials including a Great Lakes aquatic food web poster and a mid-level lake sturgeon curriculum that incorporates data from a sturgeon fishery project yellow from the Cornell Department of Natural Resources.

“Our new Lake Sturgeon Intermediate Program features the charismatic prehistoric fish known as the ‘living fossil’ as a stepping stone into the world of science, environmental stewardship and STEM-focused careers. for students. It also highlights the fishery as a significant contributor to the economic health of New York State, ”said Furgal, who has gained prior research and technical experience with the Department of Environmental Conservation of the United States. New York State, US Fish and Wildlife Service, and US Geological Survey.

NYSG’s new Great Lakes Coastal Literacy Specialist Nate Drag worked with staff at Cornell’s Native American and Native Studies program to develop environmental-themed playlists for K- classes. 12. Drag uses playlists as well as resources on lake sturgeon and a Freedom Seekers curriculum that highlights the history of the New York Underground Railroad, in its training workshops “to teach teachers. “.

“Teacher Workshops allow teachers to reach hundreds of students through the use of New York Sea Grant curricula, associated activities and collateral materials designed to connect educators, students and the public to the unique, ecological, cultural, professional, historical, economic, recreational and STEM resources of the Great Lakes region, ”explains Drag.

Drag also coordinates New York’s Great Lakes Ecosystem Education Exchange, administered in partnership with the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation.

The NYSG extension team also includes specialists focused on seafood safety, Great Lakes and marine fisheries, aquaculture, Great Lakes and Estuary marine coastal processes and hazards. ‘Hudson, conservation and management of Long Island Sound, coastal community development, coastal recreation and tourism, and education and literacy. The New York Sea Grant is one of 34 university programs of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration National Sea Grant College Program.

Kara Lynn Dunn is the publicist for New York Sea Grant Great Lakes and the Great Lakes Research Consortium.

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