When Todd McLeish was writing his newest book, Basking with Humpbacks: Tracking Threatened Marine Life in New England Waters, he sought dozens of experts on marine biology, oceanography, and related topics for comment. Since he works in URI’s Department of Communications and Marketing, he could have turned to faculty members to answer most of his questions, but he didn’t want to be so parochial. Yet wherever he turned he found the road always led back to URI.
“My shark chapter quotes three URI alumni while my bay scallop chapter quotes two; my horseshoe crab chapter features one URI scientist and one alumnus; the chapter on harlequin ducks has quotes from two alumni; several chapters feature scientists from the Sea Grant program, which is based at URI; and in several other chapters I relied on URI faculty and alumni for background information,” says the author. “I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised, but it was nice to learn firsthand how many of the leading marine scientists throughout New England have ties to the University.”