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Steward Experience Helps Student Launch
Fisheries Research Career:
Former NY Sea Grant waterfront steward Stacy Furgal,
left, is now a Fisheries Technician with the
U.S. Geological Survey in Oswego, NY.
She is seen here with USGS Research Vessel
Chief Engineer Ted Strang preparing to
bottom trawl Lake Ontario. Photo: USGS

Oswego, NY; March 13, 2014 -- New York Sea Grant is looking to hire college and graduate students to serve as Launch Stewards at waterfront venues in Cayuga, Jefferson, Madison, Oneida, Onondaga, Oswego, and Wayne counties in 2014.

The student-stewards will provide watercraft inspection training and public outreach to boaters at select launch ramps along Lake Ontario between Henderson Harbor and Sodus Bay and on Oneida Lake.

Using a standardized protocol, the student-stewards demonstrate and teach boaters the nationally-recognized Clean, Drain, Dry principles of the Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers campaign as a part of a simple watercraft inspection that helps minimize and prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species (AIS).

“The Launch Stewards along Lake Ontario and on waters elsewhere in New York play a key role in educating the public about how they can help manage aquatic invasive species,” says Steward Program Manager Mary Penney, a Coastal Community Development Specialist with New York Sea Grant, Oswego, NY. 

“New York Sea Grant is working with other steward program leaders, the Cornell University Invasive Species Program, and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation to develop branding that makes the stewards easily identifiable by boaters and to standardize the protocol for safe, quick and simple inspections by stewards and by the boaters themselves after they leave the launch areas,” Penney adds.

The Launch Stewards also participate in educational outreach, collect boater usage and AIS data.

Former New York Sea Grant Launch Steward Stacy Furgal, now a U.S. Geological Survey Fisheries Technician, says the experience she gained as a waterfront steward with New York Sea Grant was invaluable training for working in the environmental field.

“As a New York Sea Grant steward, I was introduced to good data management practices and had the opportunity to build my collaboration and communication skills. I interacted with the public and was responsible for sharing accurate scientific information about the resource areas. I learned hands-on knowledge that I am using in my current invasive fish and zooplankton research job,” Furgal says.

Applications will be accepted until positions are filled and can be emailed to New York Sea Grant Mary Penney at mp357@cornell.edu. For more information, contact Penney at New York Sea Grant, SUNY Oswego, 315-312-3042.

The full PDF announcement of the New York Sea Grant Launch Steward opportunity with position description, dates, pay, and qualifications is online at  www.seagrant.sunysb.edu/coastalcomm/pdfs/NYSGLaunchStewRecruit2014.pdf.  

New York Sea Grant (NYSG), a cooperative program of Cornell University and the State University of New York, is one of 33 university-based programs under the National Sea Grant College Program (NSGCP) of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Through its statewide network of integrated services, NYSG has been promoting coastal vitality, environmental sustainability, and citizen awareness about the State’s ma­rine and Great Lakes resources since 1971.

For updates on New York Sea Grant activities, www.nyseagrant.org has RSS, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube links. -30-


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