The trio on Thursday presented their research on oyster aquaculture, which is linked to two bills, to lawmakers during a meeting of the Joint Natural and Economic Resources Appropriations Committee.
Oyster aquaculture is the practice of farming oysters for human consumption. It involves cultivating oysters in plastic net bags supported on a rack where water can flow around them, allowing oysters to flourish in areas that might not be friendly to oyster populations.
Allen, a junior and one of six students who spent the fall at the Outer Banks, said they analyzed aquaculture by surveying, doing policy analysis and evaluating current practices.
The two bills moving through the legislature aim to expand these oyster hatcheries and make it easier for those looking to join the industry by cutting down on application and rental fees that are often barriers.