Recently completed thesis research focuses on beach litter, marine sanctuaries, and aquaculture

Sara Benson, Katie Denman and Heather Kinney defended and passed their thesis research this April. All three graduate students will be receiving their Masters of Arts in Marine Affairs this May.

S.-Benson_4.27Benson, under major professor Dr. David Bidwell, defended her thesis research titled “Investigating Rhode Island Town Beach Litter Policies.” Benson defended her research on how beach managers perceived their trash policies, carry in/carry out or trash receptacles, to be working on town beaches. This study looked at the reasons why policies were chosen, as well as the perceived benefits and costs of different policies in order to effectively reduce the amount of marine debris entering the ocean from land based sources.

K.-Denman_4.27Denman, under major professor Dr. Tracey Dalton, defended her thesis research entitled “Perceptions of Participants in the NOAA National Marine Sanctuary Nomination Process: A Case Study of Mallows Bay-Potomac River.” Denman defended findings from interviews conducted with key participants that were involved in the NOAA nomination process in order to understand overall perceptions of the nomination process, and more specifically, to identify what characteristics of the nomination process have contributed to the overall quality of the process.

H.-Kinney_4.27Kinney, under major professor Dr. Tracey Dalton, presented her thesis research titled “Aquaculturists’ Perceptions of Integrated Multi-Trophic Aquaculture (IMTA).” Kinney presented findings from interviews conducted with aquaculturists from Maine, Washington, and Connecticut who had been involved with IMTA projects. The study explored how aquaculturists’ perceptions of IMTA may affect the adoption and continuation of the method, and highlighted perceived challenges and benefits expressed by the respondents. Findings from this study may be used to inform efforts to more effectively engage aquaculturists in IMTA.

Visit University of Rhode Island’s access to Master’s Theses through to read the full abstract and theses.