NOAA’s Teacher at Sea Program Honors Alumni at 25th Anniversary Celebration and Awards Ceremony

On July 15, 2015, ten NOAA Teacher at Sea alumni were honored with the distinguished NOAA Teacher at Sea Program Excellence in Science Education Award at an event on Capitol Hill hosted by United States Senator Jeanne Shaheen (New Hampshire) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)’s Chief Scientist Dr. Rick Spinrad.

Well after their research cruises ended, these alumni continue to demonstrate enthusiasm for ocean science and research and share their thirst to learn more with their students. They find creative ways to continue collaborating with NOAA scientists and crew, and they work tirelessly to connect their students to real-world ocean science after what they describe was a professionally and personally “transformative” experience.

Awards were also given to NOAA scientists and NOAA’s fleet of vessels for their unwavering commitment and support to education:

  • Dr. Richard Merrick, the Chief Science Advisor for NOAA Fisheries Service, represented NOAA scientists and received an award on their behalf. NOAA scientists have spent thousands of hours mentoring teachers during research expeditions at sea and increasing teachers’ knowledge of and appreciation for ocean science.
  • Rear Admiral David Score, the Director of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps and the Office of Marine and Aviation Operations, represented NOAA’s fleet of hydrographic survey, oceanographic research, and fisheries research vessels and received an award on their behalf. They have provided teachers from throughout the nation with safe at-sea research experience and your unwavering commitment to education and outreach.

Thank you to US Senator for Alabama Senator Richard Shelby and Congressman Mo Brooks from Alabama for attending.

The NOAA Teacher at Sea Program was started in 1990 by a NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps officer, Lt. Ilene Byron. Over the last 25 years, through a highly competitive process, the NOAA Teacher at Sea Program selects 25-35 kindergarten through college level teachers each year, from throughout the country, to spend 2 weeks to a month at sea. These teachers gain insight into oceanographic, hydrographic, and fisheries research that can only be appreciated and understood while working 12-hour shifts, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week alongside NOAA’s world-renowned scientists, NOAA Corps Officers, and NOAA wage mariners on ocean-based research projects.

Special thanks to our partners at the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation.

A group of 11 men and women are standing in a semi circle. They are holding awards.
(L-R) RADM David Score, Elizabeth Eubanks (TAS), Dr. Richard Merrick, Dr. Rick Spinrad, Jennifer Hammond, Deborah Campbell (TAS), Bill Lindquist (TAS), Barney Peterson (TAS), Michele Brustolon (TAS), Jullie Karre (TAS), Sue Zupko (TAS) Three teachers received this distinguished award but were unable to attend the ceremony: Dr. Suzanne Acord from Hawaii, Turtle Haste from New Mexico, and Chris Monsour from Ohio