UMassD alum Dahlia Medeiros ’12, who earned her MS in Marine Science and Technology at the School for Marine Science & Technology (SMAST), recently accepted a position with the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection as an Environmental Engineer for the Waterways Regulation Program.
Assisting in addressing the Commonwealth's concerns
“Through this program, the Commonwealth seeks to preserve and protect the rights of the public, and to guarantee that private uses of tidelands and waterways serve a proper public purpose,” said Dahlia. “Some of our major goals include protecting areas of critical environmental concern, including ocean sanctuaries and other ecologically sensitive areas from unnecessary encroachment by fill and structures, as well as protection of the rights of waterfront property owners.”
Protecting and promoting tidelands as a workplace for commercial fishing, shipping, passenger transportation, boat building and repair, and other activities in which the proximity to the water is essential or highly advantageous is another goal. “As part of our efforts, we also encourage the development of city and town harbor plans to dovetail local waterfront land use interests with the Commonwealth’s statewide concerns.”
Dahlia’s current work also involves focusing on saltmarsh restoration projects and a beach nourishment project that will involve the construction of one of the first T-shaped stone jetty systems in the Cape Cod area.
Paving the way to a career as an engineer and scientist
“Studying and working at SMAST really helped me to see the interconnectedness between different areas of environmental and marine science,” said Dahlia, who worked as a coastal systems research assistant while at SMAST. “My experience at SMAST has given me the ability to branch out into new fields with confidence. I don’t feel hemmed into one tiny niche, because I’ve seen how dramatically each area of science influences the next. It’s great feeling that my knowledge and skills can be applied in various arenas and can translate to different career paths.”