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Upcoming Initiative Events

Mark your calendar and join us at upcoming Initiative events or watch/listen to recordings of previous Initiative events. We are building strong collaborative teams that will work with our coastal communities, and we welcome you to join us on our journey. (Contact Amanda Mueller for information concerning Initiative events.)

You can access each of the Initiative virtual events at

Recordings of our past events can be viewed on our NC State Coastal Resilience and Sustainability YouTube channel.

Dialogue with the Director

Initiative Director, Dr. Erin Seekamp, is dedicating time the next few weeks to get to know the members of the Initiative. She is excited to hear about your Coastal Resilience and Sustainability research, teaching and engagement goals, and your suggestions for the Initiative including your desired involvement with the Initiative. Feel free to stop by Hunt or Hill Library as noted in the time and locations below.

  • September 30, 10:00 – SORRY, CANCELLED in case of inclement weather

When: 10:00 – 11:00 am (EST) – Reception immediately following
Where: Witherspoon Student Center, Sankofa Room (NC State University)

“The islands of Tuvalu are among the lowest-lying islands in the world. They are highly vulnerable to rising sea levels associated with the climate emergency the planet now faces. It is possible that the inhabitants of these islands will need to become ‘climate refugees’ (though there is no such legal category)…The idea of the neighbor is deeply familiar to indigenous knowledge, to the Christian tradition and the ethics of climate justice.” – Mania Talia

Mr. Maina Talia is from Tuvalu, an island country in the Polynesian subregion of Oceania in the Pacific Ocean. He holds a master of theology degree with an emphasis on climate change and theology. Mr. Talia started working for the Ekalesia Kelisiano Tuvalu (EKT) as its climate change officer in 2011 under the Department of Peace and Justice. In his tenure of work, he coordinated the construction of the EKT theological statement called “Dancing with God in the rainbow.” Presently he is studying for his doctorate in Australia. Mr. Talia was part of the Tuvalu government delegation to the Paris Conference on Climate Change and recently to the 2022 Climate Change Conference in Egypt.

Other Events

When: 7:30 pm
Where: Talley Student Union – Stewart Theatre
Cost: Student Tickets $8, Faculty and Staff Tickets $15

Where: NC State University Hunt Library (in-person, hybrid also available)

Join us to:

  • hear what the Climate Leaders Program cohort of students are working on to address climate change.
  • learn about NC State faculty members and professional staff efforts towards climate change mitigation and adaptation.
  • listen to external experts from other universities, corporations, government and non-profit organizations.
  • meet presenters and attendees also working in the climate change arena to start building collaborative opportunities.

More information coming soon!

When: 3:00 – 4:00 pm
Where: Virtual


Keynote speakers:


Tristan Ahtone is a member of the Kiowa Tribe and is Editor at Large at Grist. He previously served as Editor in Chief at the Texas Observer and Indigenous Affairs editor at High Country News. He has reported for Al Jazeera America, PBS NewsHour, National Native News, NPR and National Geographic. Ahtone’s stories have won multiple honors, including investigative awards from the Gannett Foundation and Public Radio News Directors Incorporated. He additionally led the High Country News team that received a George Polk Award, an IRE Award, a Sigma Award, a Society of News Design Award and a National Magazine Award nomination. A past president of the Native American Journalists Association, Ahtone is a 2017 Nieman Fellow and a director of the Muckrock Foundation.


Robert Lee has a PhD in History from the University of California, Berkeley, an MA in American Studies from the University of Heidelberg. Before joining the Cambridge faculty, he was a junior fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows. His articles and digital scholarship on the relationship between Indigenous dispossession and US state formation in the American West have received awards from the American Historical Association, the Organization of American Historians, the Western History Association, the Society for History in the Federal Government, and others. He is currently writing a book on US expansion into the Louisiana Purchase and stewarding a digital mapping project tracking the historical creation of real estate on the US public domain.

When: 7:00 pm
Where: Talley Student Union

  • Panelists
    • Tristian Ahtone
    • Dr. Brian Peters
    • Honiah Locklear
    • Nathan Campbell
    • Lee Tartaglia
    • McKenzie Cummings

When: 9:30 – 10:30 am
Where: Teaching and Visualization Lab, James B. Hunt Jr. Library

  • Join Margaret Pearce, Citizen Potawatomi tribal member and cartographer living on Penobscot homelands in Maine. She sees cartographic language as a powerful mode of graphic expression complementary to writing and speech, where narratives and dialogues across cultures and between viewpoints can be explored and new possibilities given room to emerge and flower, in particular for the expression of Indigenous geographies. She holds a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Geography and taught courses in cartographic history, theory, and practice as a geography professor for 15 years. Margaret Pearce is a 2022 National Geographic Wayfinder Award recipient.
  • Learn about the Land-Grab Universities project and the maps/graphs created display how Indigenous lands were expropriated to fund land-grant universities across the nation.

Past Initiative Events and Recordings

Dr. Po-Yi Hung – 2021-22 Fulbright Scholar and Luce East Asia Fellow, National
Humanities Center and UNC-Chapel Hill; Associate Professor,
Department of Geography, National Taiwan University

What does the “green” mean in green energy? In Taiwan, the planned site for offshore wind farms overlaps with both oyster farms and the habitat of Taiwanese Humpback Dolphins, categorized as a critically endangered species by the IUCN. This has resulted in a clash between conserving the oyster farming landscape, protecting an endangered species, and developing green energy against climate change. Facing this dilemma, this talk reconsiders the spatial struggles over the “green” label affixed to offshore wind farm projects, and other forms of green energy in general.

Recording coming soon.

Learn about NC’s Office of Recovery and Resiliency (NCORR) and the NC Coastal Federation, their work, and how they partner with university faculty to do engaged research with communities. NCORR will discuss projects currently underway, where communities need help, and how NCORR has partnered with faculty to date. The Coastal Federation will also share examples of their collaborations with faculty and communities, and both will discuss opportunities coming in the future.

Andrea Webster, Resilience Policy Advisor
North Carolina Office of Recovery and Resiliency

Todd Miller, Executive Director
North Carolina Coastal Federation

Presenter: Seth Theuerkauf, Science Coordinator for the Office of Aquaculture, NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service

Seminar Series: This seminar was the ninth and last in a weekly series where experts within and outside of NC State will address the same question: What is the future of Coastal Resilience and Sustainability Research and Communications?

Presenter: Helena Mitasova
Professor at the Department of Marine, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences
Associate Director and Faculty Fellow at the NC State Center for Geospatial Analytics

Seminar Series: This seminar was the eighth in a weekly series where experts within and outside of NC State will address the same question: What is the future of Coastal Resilience and Sustainability Research and Communications?

Older recordings can be viewed on our NC State Coastal Resilience and Sustainability YouTube channel.