End of Fellowship Reflection

And just like that my fellowship with the Ocean Protection Council is over! It was a great summer and now I can reflect back on the work I completed.

What did you accomplish with your host organization? What was the impact of your work?

This summer I wrote a white paper on how sea level rise will impact critical infrastructure in California. The purpose of this paper was to begin scoping a Critical Infrastructure Resiliency Plan that the Ocean Protection Council (OPC) has detailed in its strategic plan. This paper began the conversation at OPC about coastal infrastructure and highlighted the current vulnerability of infrastructure. It also highlighted gaps in knowledge and showcased case studies. This paper began the process for OPC to determine the scope of the plan, how they want to approach the RFP process, and began the conversations around infrastructure. I’m happy to help begin this process for OPC through my research and am happy with how my results turned out.

Describe the benefits of this experience for you professionally and personally? 

This experience helped solidify that coastal resiliency is the field I want to work in. It also helped to show how State Agencies work and gave me exposure to the processes of Agencies and the staff who work there. Speaking to staff members gave me a great idea of the type of work people do at OPC and allowed me to expand my network, even though the internship was remote. Personally, this internship tested my ability to self-motivate and work in a remote conditions. This required a lot of discipline and organization to stay on task. It was both hard and enlightening to work in these conditions and will help prepare me for future remote work and remote schooling starting this Fall. 

Did your experience provide any unexpected discovery, self-reflection, or epiphany?

This experience helped open my eyes to how sea level rise will impact more than just houses and apartments. Instead, so many aspects of our society may be disrupted. It helped broaden the scope of how I think about sea level rise and really allowed me to explore an aspect of sea level rise adaptation that I hadn’t been fully thinking of. Overall this internship was a great experience that allowed me to meet incredible folks working on coastal and ocean issues. I learned so much from working with OPC and am so glad I got the opportunity. Sadly, this summer was my last summer living in Monterey with the Fall being online, but I’m glad I spent this summer soaking up as much as possible. The picture below is from one of my Big Sur adventures. 

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