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Students looked at plankton at the Sea Education Association. Photo credit:  George Liles, NEFSC/NOAA.
boat tour
Codman Academy students toured the R/V Gloria Michelle with Officer in Charge Lt Anna-Liza Villard-Howe of the NOAA Corps.  Photo credit:  Shelley Dawicki, NEFSC/NOAA.
Exploring the touch tank in the Aquarium. Photo credit:  George Liles, NEFSC/NOAA
food prep
Preparing food for the animals is part of routine operations at the Woods Hole Science Aquarium. Photo credit: George Liles, NEFSC/NOAA.

March 24, 2014
Contact: Shelley Dawicki

Winter Vacation Means Marine Science in Woods Hole for Codman Academy Students

Four students from Dorchester’s Codman Academy spent three days in Woods Hole during their winter school vacation, learning about the scientific community in the village and a whole lot more. Hosted by the Woods Hole Science Aquarium (WHSA), the students learned about marine research conducted in the village and about possible careers in marine and environmental science, with a focus on research conducted by NOAA Fisheries and the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL).

For Codman Academy students Ciana Chambers, Phinix Knight-Jacks, Kayla Ross and Kristie Sanchez, it was also their first trip to Woods Hole, and they hope not their last. All four are juniors, and the visit raised their awareness not only about marine research but also about the variety of career possibilities in the field. 

Codman Academy Charter Public School has participated in a winter program at the WHSA for the past four years. Organized by George Liles, WHSA curator with assistance from aquarist Kristy Owen and NEFSC Director of Academic Programs Ambrose Jearld, the program is also intended to encourage students to consider participating in other Woods Hole student experiences, including internships at the Aquarium.   

The students, selected by Codman Academy faculty, were housed at the MBL Swope Center with a chaperone. Between breakfast and lunch at Café Swope and dinners in Falmouth with program staff, the students learned about living marine resource management and stock assessments, participated in a dissection of a monkfish, were introduced to zebra fish in the touch tank, and learned about marine animal husbandry at the WHSA.

They also toured the NEFSC fisheries research vessel Gloria Michelle, and attended a Woods Hole Black History Month presentation on California mussels. They visited one MBL laboratory to learn how marine animals, such as sea urchins, are used in biomedical research, and toured MBL's Marine Resources Center to observe the way animals are cultured for scientific research. Knot-tying was featured at the Sea Education Association, along with microscopes to examine plankton.

“I am interested in animal science, and really enjoyed the time spent in the Woods Hole Science Aquarium learning about the animals as well as animal husbandry,” Ciana Chambers said.   Phinix Knight-Jacks particularly liked the monkfish dissection.  All agreed it was a great experience and a good opportunity to learn more about scientific research as well as possible career opportunities.

The program for Codman Academy students was hosted by NOAA Fisheries' Northeast Fisheries Science Center and the Marine Biological Laboratory, with support from the Woods Hole Diversity Initiative. Woods Hole Science Aquarium is part of NOAA’s Northeast Fisheries Science Center and is the oldest marine aquarium in the U.S.

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