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Help us find the next leaders in
coastal science and sustainability 

I am writing to share our excitement and recruit applications for our new solutions-focused graduate program, the Coastal Science and Policy Program at the University of California, Santa Cruz. We seek applications from, or recommendations of, emerging coastal science and policy leaders who are exceptional collaborators, young professionals, recent graduates, or grantees and who show leadership promise and passion to address opportunities and challenges from land to sea. 

The Coastal Science and Policy Program at the University of California Santa Cruz offers a Master of Science (MS) that will prepare ten outstanding students each year for leadership in coastal sustainability. Graduates of this program apply interdisciplinary understanding from natural and social sciences to inform actionable solutions to complex problems facing coastal communities and ecosystems and create measurable and scalable change. In 2019, we have also expanded the program to include a PhD Designated Emphasis in Coastal Science and Policy for students pursuing a PhD in other UC Santa Cruz graduate programs (e.g., Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Environmental Sciences, Arts, Engineering, Ocean Sciences, etc.). To learn about the PhD Designated Emphasis click here.

We encourage both U.S. and international students to apply, as well as students from ethnic, racially, culturally and socioeconomically underrepresented backgrounds. We value diverse perspectives as we build our program culture. Based on financial need and program resources, the program offers a limited number of fellowships for tuition and living expenses or a combination thereof.

In the first year, MS students identify problems and threats, explore potential solutions, and pursue feasible options in intensive, practical and interdisciplinary coursework. Our students hone and apply their skills at developing and leading solutions via an individual capstone project, composed of a summer placement and a second year embedded full-time engagement with a practitioner organization from government, nonprofit, or business. Second-year students also attend a capstone seminar in which they share their issues and progress with faculty and fellow students. This dual immersion in academic and practitioner cultures and contexts improves graduates’ ability to work fluidly across the science-practice interface.

Our location on Monterey Bay and at the UC Santa Cruz coastal science campus allow us to conduct groundbreaking collaborative research and offer students unique educational opportunities. We are an incubator, inspiring students to pursue new initiatives that contribute to coastal sustainability and marine conservation, and to steward larger institutions, government agencies, and the private sector in developing innovative sustainability programs. 

Applications close December 10, 2019. Please forward this email to promising candidates who you believe will be a good fit for the program. To learn more about our program please visit our website or contact with questions.


Anne R. Kapuscinski


Coastal Science & Policy Program

University of California Santa Cruz


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