During my first week I worked on a research memo analyzing current human rights concerns in the West Papuan conflict. Now I am working on critiquing environmental and financial regulatory frameworks for deep sea mining in the Pacific region.
Mining projects are currently in the exploratory phase, and greater environmental and economic protections need to be put in place so that Pacific island states can effectively evaluate the risks before deciding whether to lease their seabed to mining companies. My supervisors, Julian and Julie (above), have been wonderful to work with; I have especially enjoyed hearing about environmental protection work from their perspective of human rights lawyers.
I have spent my free time visiting monuments and museums to learn about Guam’s history, playing beach ultimate with an extremely welcoming community, exploring caves in the jungle, and snorkeling. It’s easy to catch sunrises and sunsets because Guam is quite narrow and doesn’t take long to drive.
The traditional Chamorro cuisine is delicious. My favorite so far is kelaguen, a cold dish consisting of diced meat (ranging from chicken to octopus), coconut bits, hot peppers, and lemon juice. Another delicious dish is suni, basically spinach in coconut milk. I’ve been enjoying local fruits, like mangoes and soursops, daily.
Guam is a really interesting mix of quintessentially American traditions, clothing, music, and food plus much that is unique to Guam. I can’t believe I will be leaving in a month–there is still so much here I want to see and do.