Applications being accepted for Marine Science Fellowship Scholarship at UH Hilo

By B. Chen

The American Samoa Government’s Coral Reef Advisory Group (CRAG), together with the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council (WESTPAC) and the University of Hawaii at Hilo are working collaboratively to seek out eligible students for the Marine Science Fellowship Scholarship.

Applications are currently being accepted and the closing date is June 17, 2013. The scholarship winner will be notified on July 10, 2013.

CRAG, through the CRAG-WESTPAC-UH Hilo Marine Science Undergraduate Fellowship Program, continues its commitment to increasing local capacity in the field of marine science and resource management. According to the scholarship announcement received by the Samoa News, “UH Hilo is well positioned to help American Samoa meet its goals, and with matching fund support from CRAG and WESTPAC, this innovative collaborative fellowship program is made available for interested students from American Samoa.”

The American Samoa Government seeks to empower its citizens through four-year, BS/BA degree level undergraduate education and training to be able to secure local jobs after graduation. And while the American Samoa Community College (ASCC) provides students a solid beginning toward achieving this goal, there are no institutions located in in the territory that are able to provide the complete education and training required for a BS/BA degree in Marine Science.

That is why the American Samoa Government (ASG) and the University of Hawai’i at Hilo (UH Hilo) share a strong commitment to provide increased opportunities for undergraduate students from American Samoa to obtain marine science BS/BA level degrees in order to secure permanent, diverse, and expanding employment opportunities in American Samoa.

Since its inception in 1976, the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council (WESTPAC) has been guided by social, cultural, and economic realities of Pacific Island communities, with a specific goal of promoting the involvement of western Pacific communities in western Pacific fisheries management.

The Coral Reef Advisory Group (CRAG) is a collaborative of five ASG agencies, united by a mutual consensus to manage coral reefs in American Samoa. CRAG plans and implements strategies to address various areas of coral reef protection in American Samoa, from education and outreach to scientific studies and monitoring.

All applicants wishing to be considered for the CRAG-WESTPAC Scholarship should submit unofficial copies of all college and/or university transcripts; a resume with relevant experience and activities, one letter of recommendation from a professor or relevant employer, a 750-word essay (maximum) on the importance of managing coral reefs in your island jurisdiction, and their career goals upon completion of the marine science fellowship program.

Those who are eligible to apply for the partnership scholarship must have:

•            Completed a two-year program in marine science or related field at any accredited college/university within the US and its territories;

•            A cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 and above;

•            Acquired an acceptance letter to the University of Hawaii at Hilo for Fall 2013;

•            Demonstrated interest and previous work/involvement with coral reef conservation;

•            Guaranteed to return to American Samoa upon completion of the program and provide services through any of the five agencies of CRAG for a minimum of three years;

•            Strong ties (of Samoan ancestry) to the culture and traditions of American Samoa; and

•            Be a U.S. Citizen or U.S.National

Application material may be sent by mail, fax, email, or drop-off at attention to Derek Toloumu at the Department of Marine & Wildlife Resources in Fagatogo, and must be received no later than June 17, 2013, at 4:00 pm, to the following:

ASG/CRAG-WESTPAC-UH Hilo Marine Science Scholarship

Attn:  Derek Toloumu

Mail:             P.O. Box 3730

Department of Marine & Wildlife Resources

Pago Pago, American Samoa 96799

Email: Phone: 684-633-4456/ FAX: 684-633-5944


View the original article on the Samoa News website here.