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    Austin Becker, Hampshire College“Williams-Mystic provided a critical foundation for my academic career, which has continued to be incredibly interdisciplinary.”


    Williams-Mystic Spring 1994
    Hampshire College ’95
    Major: Maritime Studies
    Part-time job at Williams-Mystic: Shipyard Assistant


    Austin Becker is a professor at University of Rhode Island in the departments of Marine Affairs and Landscape Architecture. He works across the fields of planning, policy, engineering, design, and climate-change science. He works on solutions to pressing problems such as how to make ports and harbors more resilient to climate change.


    Austin sailed aboard schooners such as Harvey Gamage, Lettie G. Howard, and Soundwaters.  He earned his captain’s license and spent five years as master of the 110-foot Sloop Providence before returning to graduate school.  He earned two masters degrees at the University of Rhode Island (Marine Affairs and Environmental Science & Management) and then a Ph.D. at Stanford University at the Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment & Resources.


    “Williams-Mystic represents the very best in interdisciplinary undergraduate education. The topic and theme based courses orient students to consider a wide variety of perspectives, from history, to law and policy, to science, and literature. In a world filled with complex challenges, like climate change, solving problems requires us to think critically, but broadly.”