Skip to main content

Hannah Burke

“During my final semester at Rutgers I’ve been lucky to work as a research technician at the Haskins Shellfish Research Lab. Through the various projects conducted here, I’ve learned about the alarming threat that rising sea levels pose to New Jersey and all coastal communities. As a scientist, climate action is important to me for a variety of reasons: promoting biodiversity, protecting clean water and air, and preserving essential ecosystems.

As a musician, climate action means something else: protecting the rich cultures belonging to coastal communities. New Orleans, Miami, and New York City are just some of the U.S. cities most vulnerable to rising sea levels. These cities also have important histories and legacies in the arts, and I don’t think most settlers realize what is at stake when we talk about losing these areas to flooding. If you listen to music, appreciate art, if you love food – we have no choice but to push for bold structural change that will protect our precious shorelines and the communities they create. Playing music on the Delaware Bay has been one of my most valuable and inspiring experiences here at the Haskins Lab, which is why I encourage artists of any discipline to consider what creating would look like without the natural environment we too often take for granted.”

Hannah Burke
5th year Music and Biomath double major
Research technician at Haskins Shellfish Research Lab