The University of Hawaiʻi Sea Grant College Program accepted $1.4 million from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Sept. 19.
The grant was to help establish a new collaborative aquaculture-focused program in Hawai‘i and the Pacific region. The national network actively encourages the research, conservation, understanding and use of coastal resources.
“Many opportunities in the past, from various sources, lacked a strong understanding of the needs here in Hawaii and in the Pacific region, and instead combined them with broad national needs,” said Hawaiʻi Sea Grant director and principal investigator, David Lerner.
According to Lerner, the grant will be able to increase aquaculture outreach.
“In addition,” Lerner said, “one of the deliverables is to further develop college courses around aquaculture in support of a potential degree program at the University of Hawaii at Hilo and a certificate program at UHM.”
This grant is the largest sum of funding in one competition received by Hawaii Sea Grant in the last couple of decades according to Lerner.
“We greatly appreciate the support from stakeholders across the region,” said Lerner, “and that of our congressional delegation and the U.S. Congress that has resulted in providing these pathways and opportunities for Hawaiʻi Sea Grant to conduct research, outreach, and education in support of the increased sustainability and resilience of the people and communities in Hawaiʻi and the Pacific region.”