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University of Alaska Southeast: One Campus, One Book 2022

The 2022-23 UAS One Campus, One Book selection is Eat Like a Fish: My adventures as a fisherman turned restorative ocean farmer by Bren Smith.

Juneau, Alaska

Date of Press Release: August 31, 2022

Eat Like a Fish — My Adventures Farming the Ocean to Fight Climate Change book cover
Eat Like a Fish — My Adventures Farming the Ocean to Fight Climate Change book cover

Updated February 27,  2023

The 2022-23 UAS One Campus, One Book selection is

Eat Like a Fish: My adventures as a fisherman turned restorative ocean farmer by Bren Smith.

UAS will partner with the Sitka Public Libraries, Barnacle Foods and others to celebrate and explore mariculture, food security, local foods and the deep connections our communities have to the ocean.

  • Related events will provide opportunities for Alaskans to learn more about the role of mariculture and aquaculture in the Alaskan economy, local and global food security and in mitigating effects of climate change.
  • Participants will gain knowledge of employment pathways and opportunities related to mariculture.

Eat Like A Fish provides readers a timely introduction to issues central to life in Southeast Alaska as showcased in Tlingit oral literature and the research and economic development sectors.

Bren Smith will visit Juneau and Sitka March 6-10 thanks to a grant from the Alaska State Library.

All new UAS Students will receive a complimentary copy. Additional library copies (print, ebook, audiobook) are available at Egan Library and others. Additional complimentary copies will be available for anyone at locations throughout Juneau, Sitka and Ketchikan soon thanks to funding from the Alaska State Library. More information is available on the One Campus, One Book website.

About the Book

In the face of apocalyptic climate change, a former fisherman shares a bold and hopeful new vision for saving the planet: farming the ocean. Here Bren Smith—pioneer of regenerative ocean agriculture (mariculture) —introduces the world to a groundbreaking solution to the global climate crisis.

A genre-defining “climate memoir,” Eat Like a Fish interweaves Smith’s own life—from sailing the high seas aboard commercial fishing trawlers to developing new forms of ocean farming to surfing the frontiers of the food movement—with actionable food policy and practical advice on ocean farming. Written with the humor and swagger of a fisherman telling a late-night tale, it is a powerful story of environmental renewal, and a must-read guide to saving our oceans, feeding the world, and—by creating new jobs up and down the coasts—putting working class Americans back to work. Listen to a sample read by the author.

“Part memoir, part treatise on the life of a professional fisherman, part manual for the future of eating worldwide, this unique book cannot help but make readers think long and hard about the fate of the earth as it faces the challenges of global warming and the outlook for feeding the planet... Smith has now become a visionary leader in cultivating what may turn out to be a primary source of the world’s food. This is a book about a man as well as a book about an idea.” —Booklist (starred review)

About Bren Smith

Bren Smith is a former commercial fisherman turned ocean farmer who pioneered the development of restorative 3D ocean farming. Born and raised in Newfoundland, he left high school at the age of 14 to work on fishing boats from the Grand Banks to the Bering Sea. Smith is the owner of Thimble Island Ocean Farm and Executive Director of the non-profit Greenwave, which trains new ocean farmers in building a climate-resilient food system. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, National Geographic, The Atlantic, and elsewhere. Smith’s genre-defying “climate memoir,” Eat Like a Fish was published in 2019. It won the James Beard Foundation Book Award for Writing and was a Finalist for the International Association of Culinary Professionals Cookbook Award in the Food Issues & Matters category. Smith’s ocean farm also won the Buckminster Fuller Challenge for ecological design and earned him a spot in TIME magazine’s “Best Inventions of 2017.” For more information on Bren Smith, visit the Penguin Random House Speakers Bureau.

Upcoming Events

Bren Smith visit with UAS Classes, Juneau Campus

Monday March 6 and Tuesday March 7

Bren Smith: Sea Farming, Sustainability and the Future of Food

Tuesday March 7,  7:00 PM UAS Juneau, Egan Lecture Hall (Egan Wing room 112)

In this talk, Bren Smith looks at the relationship between agriculture and climate, explaining how he bridges land and sea farming to create a new model that brings a high yield with a low impact. Learn more about the exciting possibilities of 3D ocean farming, from fresh food sources and flavors to climate change protection and prevention.

Bren Smith visit with students from Sitka, Pacific and Mount Edgecumbe High Schools

Wednesday March 8

Bren Smith: Ocean Farming and the Fight for Equality in a Changing World

Thursday March 9, 7:00 PM Sitka Harrigan Centennial Hall

Rising temperatures and sea levels bring rising inequality as climate change depletes our resources. In this talk, Smith explains how ocean farming is not only sustainable for the planet, but as a career, and how this new industry represents an exciting opportunity to build a uniquely diverse workforce with a regenerative economy.

Past Events

Eat Like a Fish @ UAS Campus Kickoff

Friday Sep 2 3:00-5:00 PM | Mourant Courtyard

Stop by the Egan Library table to sample dishes featuring kelp and other mariculture products. Free copies of Eat Like a Fish by Bren Smith while supplies last.

Bedding Down: Seaweed Service Day

Saturday Oct 8 

UAS students enrolled in Term Assistant Professor JoMarie Alba's Experiential Learning: Ecology of Southeast Alaska course (Biology 108) worked in conjunction with Associate Professor Darren Snyder from UAF Cooperative Extension and  John Smith III (Tlingit) to learn about the benefits of seaweed in agriculture, ecosystem services and cultural contexts and dispersed to area beaches to collect seaweed that was donated to local gardeners and Juneau area Community Gardens. (Press release)

Local Foods Tour: Barnacle Foods + Juneau Greens

Thursday Oct 13 5:30-7:00 PM

Get a behind-the-scenes tour of two Juneau businesses using innovative approaches to  produce sustainable, fresh and fantastic local foods. Space is limited and masks are required for this event. Transportation will depart from John Pugh Residence Hall at 5:40. Register

Ocean to Table: Let’s Talk Mariculture in AK

Tuesday Oct 25 7:00 PM

Panelists will discuss their roles in mariculture and reflect on local foods, sustainability and growing a new industry in Alaska. Featuring Max Stanley (Barnacle Foods), Chelsea Goucher (Foraged & Found), Dr. Schery Umanzor (UAF College of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences), Hannah Wilson (Alaska Fisheries Development Foundation) and Dan Lesh (McKinley Research). Watch Recording. 

Media Samples and Links

About One Campus, One Book

One Campus, One Book (OCOB) is the common reading program at UAS-Juneau and 2022 marks the 11th year of celebrating literature and the relationships and communities that develop between readers, writers and our stories. Discussing a common book can also provide a safe venue for beginning difficult dialogues and allows members of the UAS community (and the broader Juneau community) to begin each academic year on the same page. Complimentary copies are provided to UAS students attending Juneau Campus New-Student Orientation and distributed at the Egan Library, Student Housing and other venues where UAS students gather. Additional print copies, ebook and audiobook editions are made available through local libraries (find a copy).

Beginning in 2021, two books will be announced each cycle in order to aid advance planning for curriculum development (UAS faculty) and community integration (campus and community partners) of OCOB selections. The 2023-24 selection will feature Disability Visibility: 17 First-Person Stories for Todayby Alice Wong.

Please direct media inquiries regarding One Campus, One Book to: Jonas Lamb, Public Services Librarian & Associate Professor, UAS Egan Library. 907-796-6440

Additional Resources

Press Release Contact

Jonas Lamb — Public Services Librarian & Associate Professor
University of Alaska Southeast
(907) 796-6440