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Glynn Cosker

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By Glynn Cosker
Edge Contributor

American Military University (AMU) student Jae Ramirez has won the 2021 National Association of Environmental Professionals (NAEP) Charles F. Zirzow Memorial Student Award. This is the first time that an AMU student has won this prestigious award. AMU is a member of the accredited American Public University System.

NAEP and the Advancement of the Environmental Professions

As stated on the organization’s website, NAEP is “a multi-disciplinary association for professionals dedicated to the advancement of the environmental professions, a forum for state-of-the-art information on environmental planning, research and management, and a network of professional contacts and exchange of information among colleagues in industry, government, academia, and the private sector.”

AMU is entering the 10th year of a strong, professional partnership with NAEP. This partnership includes specific benefits to NAEP members, and NAEP and AMU have collaborated on a successful webinar series. Ramirez was nominated for the award by AMU environmental science faculty member Dr. Kelly Reiss.

The Charles F. Zirzow Memorial Student Award

AMU student Jae Ramirez. (Credit: Jae Ramirez).

The Zirzow Student Award is presented in honor of Charles F. Zirzow, one of the founding members of the NAEP, who passed away in 1997. The award “was established in 2001 and is presented to a college student or recent graduate, who has been recognized by their department for their academic achievement.”

Ramirez, a resident of Boston, Mass., is working toward a Master’s Degree in Environmental Policy and Management from AMU and previously graduated with honors with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Environmental Studies – also from AMU. She was given the Charles F. Zirzow Memorial Student Award at last month’s NAEP Conference and Training Symposium.

In accepting her award, Ramirez said “I am honored to be this year’s recipient of the Zirzow student award and look forward to learning more about the NAEP.”

US Coast Guard’s Environmental Initiatives

Ramirez has spent her professional career with the U.S. Coast Guard and is currently the Waterways Management Division Chief and Facilities Branch Chief in the USCG Boston Sector. Jae has been involved with the Coast Guard’s environmental programs and initiatives since 2004, and she currently oversees five petty officers in the implementation of Coast Guard safety security and environmental protection missions.

In addition to her duties with the Coast Guard, Ramirez often volunteers her time in many community events including mentoring and tutoring public school students and organizing beach cleanups.

As the winner of the Zirzow award, Ramirez will receive a complimentary one-year NAEP student membership, a cash award, a congratulatory plaque and recognition on the NAEP website.