Lynn Kurth, a science teacher at Prairie River Middle School in Merrill, will set sail aboard NOAA Ship Rainier on Monday, June 20, to assist scientists on a 13-day hydrographic survey charting the ocean seafloor off the coast of Alaska. This is not Kurth’s first voyage at sea. Kurth is an alumna of NOAA’s Teacher at Sea Program, which bridges science and education through real-world research experiences. This year, she was selected for a second venture through a separate, alumni-only application process.
“Because my students are the next generation of caretakers of our natural resources, I recognize how vital it is to bring water issues into the classroom,” says Kurth. “I’m thankful for the opportunity to work aboard NOAA Ship Rainier in order to gather the knowledge and skills that will enhance my role as an educator of students who are part of the next generation charged with the stewardship of this planet.”
In 2014, Kurth sailed with NOAA scientists on a shark survey in the Gulf of Mexico. This year, Kurth will join scientists on board NOAA Ship Rainier in Homer, Alaska, as they conduct an on-going hydrographic survey of Alaskan waters. NOAA’s Coast Survey use the data collected in these surveys to create the nautical charts necessary for marine navigation. Kurth is writing a blog about her experience, accessible at: https://teacheratsea.wordpress.com/author/lynnkurth/.
“NOAA’s Teacher at Sea Program gives teachers the professional opportunity of a lifetime with a chance to participate in cutting edge science, on the ocean, working side-by-side with world-renowned scientists,” says Jennifer Hammond, the program’s director. “Teachers describe this authentic research experience as transformative and one that allows them to bring new knowledge and excitement back to their classrooms.”
Now in its 26th year, the program has provided more than 700 teachers the opportunity to gain first-hand experience participating in science at sea. The educators chosen are able to enrich their curricula with the depth of understanding they gain by living and working side-by-side with scientists studying the marine environment.
NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth’s environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and to conserve and manage our coastal and marine resources. Join us on Facebook, Twitter and our other social media channels.