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Julia Wyman is Director of the Marine Affairs Institute at Roger Williams University School of Law/Rhode Island Sea Grant Legal Program. Before her appointment as Director, Ms. Wyman served as the staff attorney for the Marine Affairs Institute for four years. Prior to joining the Marine Affairs...

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A Busy Fall at the MAI

Posted by Julia Wyman on 10/17/2014 at 05:05 PM

It has been a busy fall at the Marine Affairs Institute! 

Meet the Bay Trip

In late September, we held our annual “Meet the Bay” trip with our 1Ls.  Save the Bay, a Rhode Island non-profit dedicated to the restoration and health of Narragansett Bay, took us on a tour of the 1Ls' home for the next three years -- Narragansett Bay.  The students helped Save the Bay staff conduct a trawl of the Bay, and learned about ocean and coastal advocacy from Baykeeper Tom Kutcher, while I talked about the programs offered at the MAI, including our joint degree program with the University of Rhode Island.  Rhode Island Sea Grant Director Dennis Nixon provided students with an overview of the great work of Rhode Island Sea Grant. 

Joint Degree LunchIn October, students gathered in the Bay View Room over lunch to learn about the joint degree program with the University of Rhode Island.  Prof. Robert Thompson, Chair of the Marine Affairs Department at URI, and I detailed the joint degree program and answered student questions.  If you weren’t able to make the lunch but have questions about the program, contact me


We love our events, but the real heart of the MAI is the research and writing done by our students.  Our students have been making us really proud over the last few months. Kaitlyn CoxKaitlyn Cox '14, a 2014 graduate finishing up her joint degree at URI, was just published in the American Bar Association, Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources, Marine Resources Newsletter.  Kaitlyn’s article, “Does a New Directive Mean New Directions?  The EU Issues a New Marine Spatial Planning Directive,” explores potential impacts of a new Directive on Marine Spatial Planning on ocean and coastal management in the European Union.  

Another recent joint degree graduate, Melissa Chalek ’13, presented the work she did as a URI Marine Affairs Fellow and Rhode Island Sea Grant Law Fellow on the Shellfish Management Plan (SMP) for the state of Rhode Island at a public stakeholders meeting in October.  Melissa compiled all of the shellfish regulations and laws in the state of Rhode Island for the SMP.  If you are interested in learning more about the SMP, please come to the public launch on November 17.  Leading up to her work on the SMP, Melissa researched shellfish relay in the state of Rhode Island for Rhode Island Sea Grant, and her findings were published in the Sea Grant Law and Policy Journal: “The Time Has Come…To Talk of Many Things: Legal Impediments to the Future of Shellfish Relay in the State of Rhode Island

Marc Fialkoff '14Rounding out recent publications, Marc Fialkoff ’14 and joint degree student Adam Deitz ’14 each had two publications this spring and summer in The Sandbar, the legal reporter for the National Sea Grant College Program.  You can read their articles on whether cruise ships docked in historic Charleston, South Carolina violate local zoning ordinances, the duty of the Coast Guard to rescue mariners in peril, what “best available science” means in the courtroom, and how to prevent pollution from ships, here and here

While we’ve been busy the past few months, the fall is far from over.  If you are in the law school this Wednesday, October 22, please stop by the Bay View Room at 3:00 PM.  We will be hosting a “Coffee and Conversation” about summer job opportunities.  Come hear about 2L John Ryan-Henry’s time this summer working in DC at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric (NOAA) Office of General Counsel.  3L Casey O’Brien will share her experiences interning at Moran Shipping and working as a Rhode Island Sea Grant Law Fellow for Save the Bay.  Learn about these opportunities, and other opportunities available for summer 2015.  We hope to see you there!