The resources of the world’s oceans and coastal waters play a major role in the lives of human beings in the 21st century. These waters and their associated coast lands serve as sources of food, minerals, energy and recreation to a significant part of the global population. They are major corridors for commerce, transportation, defense and communications. Increasingly, coastal and oceanic waters are impacted by pollution, climate change, overfishing, overexploitation of resources, and national conflicts. As these threats multiply, the need for qualified professionals who can understand these challenges and work to establish meaningful policies and laws to regulate and protect marine and coastal ecosystems has increased, as has the need to effectively communicate these issues to both the general public and those in positions of corporate and government power. The Marine Affairs program provides students with the knowledge and skills necessary to work in this very challenging and important area.
Students in the program develop a solid scientific understanding of the world’s oceans, organisms, and processes that affect them. To be truly effective in the field of Marine Affairs, however, requires more than just scientific knowledge about the oceans. It also requires a solid background in social sciences and humanities. To this end, students in the Marine Affairs program are required to complete a minor in one of the following disciplines: communications, English, art, photography, museum studies, economics, business management, political science, criminal justice, event and tourism management, global studies, history, hotel and resort management, legal studies, modern languages, philosophy, psychology, public service, or sociology, depending on the student’s career objectives. This program is designed specifically for students who wish to pursue careers in marine policy, marine law, marine economics, marine journalism, marine resource management, marine media relations, marine law enforcement, international marine studies, marine-related business ventures, and coastal conservation and development. This program also prepares students to undertake graduate work in any of these fields as the level of experience required for an individual to contribute significantly in these fields may not be adequately satisfied by an undergraduate degree alone.
This degree is not intended for students wishing to pursue graduate studies in the marine sciences or any of its sub-disciplines (e.g. marine biology, marine ecology, aquaculture or marine fisheries). Students interested in pursuing graduate work in these scientific areas should major in Marine Biology