2019 Legislative Session: Highlights for Maine's island and coastal communities

The first session of the 129th Legislature wrapped with a flurry of activity. This blog post captures few of the important energy and climate change related outcomes for island and coastal communities.

End-of-year event gives students the opportunity to celebrate, connect, and learn from each other

On June 18th, twelve students from four Maine islands, and their families, gathered at Thomas College in Waterville to celebrate the high school graduation and send-off of the MAP class of 2019 and welcome the newest MAP cohort. The event also kicked off the annual MAP Leadership Intensive.

Guest blog: Value in seeing how it’s done

Residents from five Maine islands and two coastal communities joined the Island Institute in May 2019 for a community broadband tour of the Cranberry Isles. During the exchange trip, members of the Cranberry Isles Broadband Group shared what it took to connect their five islands, and guests exchanged ideas with the other island and coastal communities represented. In this guest blog post, Keith Harriton of the Swan's Island broadband group reflects on the trip and the benefits of building connections and learning from each other.

ABD Boot Camp May 2019

During their first "Aquaculture Boot Camp” on May 1-3, our new Aquaculture Business Development (ABD) cohort ventured out to the Damariscotta area to tour local farms and learn from industry partners already working in seaweed, oysters, scallops, and mussels. One of the many benefits of the program, trips like these offer participants the chance to connect with others in their field and learn about their operations. 

Policy Update: State Investments in Broadband Infrastructure

Much has been written about why Maine needs to expand access to broadband, but less has been written about where the state has made investments and where they are likely to be made. In our latest policy update, Senior Policy Officer Nick Battista looks at why state funding is a critical piece in bringing broadband to the rural parts of our state and investing in infrastructure that is critical to their future.

The 48-Hour Field Trip

Last week I was fortunate to experience my first ever TLC field trip. The Outer Islands Teaching and Learning Collaborative, or TLC, is a group of one- and two-room school houses whose teachers support each other on curriculum and problem solving and whose students meet for virtual reading groups, student council, and science classes. Based on my experiences the past few months, the highlight of the TLC is the biannual field trip. Each fall and each spring, the TLC schools join together for multi-day field trips off island, a chance for socialization and off-island experiences, not to mention overstimulation, play, packed schedules, and possibly a college campus dining hall buffet (dessert, anyone?).

Archipelago Artist Profile: Susan Beebe

If you spend enough time in Rockland, Maine, you may have seen a woman of medium stature walking up and down Main Street, tending the pollinator garden by the harbor, or sipping a cappuccino at Rock City Coffee. She is artist, gardener, educator, and Rockland resident, Susan Beebe. This past winter, I asked Susan if I could interview her at her “studio” space. While her true studio space is outdoors and she knew I wouldn’t get an authentic view into her working space during one of Maine’s coldest months, she agreed, and we spent a little time talking about art and midcoast Maine.

Island high school students visit Rockland for Career Day event

If you were out and about in Rockland on Friday, March 29th, you might have seen groups of students from Islesboro, North Haven and Vinalhaven visiting different area businesses and organizations to learn about available career options and educational opportunities. From the arts and retail to marine trades and finance, students got an in-person look at some familiar and new ideas about work options in the Midcoast during the Career Day event.