SIO Graduate Student Wins Prestigious Marine Policy Fellowship


Date: December 2004

Chad English, Knauss Winner 2004Chad English, a doctoral candidate in the Applied Ocean Sciences curricular group at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, has won a John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship, sponsored by NOAA Sea Grant. English will spend a year as a legislative aide to Sen. Olympia J. Snowe (R-Maine), currently chair of the Commerce, Science and Transportation subcommittee on Oceans, Fisheries and Coast Guard.

The Commerce, Science and Transportation committee oversees NOAA, among other things and would potentially oversee the reauthorization of a number of important ocean-related acts, including the Marine Mammal Protection Act, Coastal Zone Management Act and the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, during the 109th Congress.

Chad plans to leave for Washington, D.C. sometime in February. In the meantime, he is preparing to defend his doctoral thesis, which examines the response of the pressure field in the Santa Barbara Channel region to winds and how this response relates to observed water velocities in the area.

NOAA Sea Grant awarded 40 Knauss fellowships for 2005. Under the program, fellows are hosted by members of the House or Senate or by federal entities involved in marine policy or ocean-related activities. The fellowship provides a stipend and some funds for travel and expenses.

"I've always been a scientist at heart," English said, explaining his
interest in marine policy. "But at the same time, the deeper I went into science, the more I saw its applications. Applied science, the idea of folding the best science into policy, has been an abiding interest."

The fellowship is an opportunity to explore other options with a doctorate in oceanography, he said. This interest was further inspired, he said, by seeing professors at SIO take active roles in making science available and useful to policy-makers. "I am not sure whether I will stay in policy after the fellowship ends or return to academia to get the science out there," he said.

The Knauss Fellowship was established in 1979 in honor of John A. Knauss, one of Sea Grant's founders and a former administrator of NOAA.


Note: English received an undergraduate degree from UC Santa Cruz