Massachusetts Marine Educators

Whale Line
Lighthouse Photo from

Keynote Presentations:

Danielle Cholewiak Acoustics Specialist – Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary

The Science of Sound in the Sea: How does anthropogenic (man-made) noise impact marine mammals and their acoustic environment?
Do you picture the deep sea as a silent sanctuary? When you think of sound underwater do you draw a blank? From snapping shrimp to singing whales to the hum of ship engines, the oceans are a cacophony of clatter. Join Danielle Cholewiak as she describes what scientists at the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary are learning about anthopogenic noise and their potentially harmful effects on marine mammals.

Robert Michelson Award Winning Underwater Photographer

The Minot Light Project. Minot’s Light was the first light house built in the USA that was completely exposed to the sea and all it’s fury. The “perfect storm” of April 1851 brought down this light with the loss of both assistant light keepers. Join the search for the original 1850 remains of the Minot Light with Robert Michelson, renowned photographer and videographer. A portion of a PBS documentary will be debuted during the keynote address!


Workshop 1 – Scallop Biology: Understanding Sea Scallops Above and Below Water
Cate O’Keefe, Michael Marino, Jon Carey, Chris Sarro
School for Marine Science and Technology (SMAST) UMass Dartmouth

The SMAST Scallop Program examines scallop biology through video surveys and laboratory experiments. This workshop will focus on the benthic habitat of scallops as seen through the camera’s lens and examine the inner workings of a live sea scallop. Students will see images of the seafloor from 200 miles offshore and will perform a hands-on dissection of a sea scallop to take an up close look at the internal organs and functions of their shape.

Workshop 2 – Marine Safety Engineering
Sid Martin and Ishan Mahapatra; Director of Technology
Northeast Maritime Institute

We will present the topic of safety engineering and outline the unique set of requirements for the mariner or engineer on board vessels or when on land to support the marine industry. We will also discuss the development process of the Golden Shellback coating and how this has helped the maritime industry. Also, we’ll discuss the role of the patent process in the science field. For hands on demonstrations we’ll have various devices that we’ll expose to wet environments and watch how they perform. This workshop will allow the opportunity to see how well electronics and water can mix.

Workshop 3 – Mass Audubon’s Allens Pond Wildlife Sanctuary protects the nature of Massachusetts.
Lauren Miller and Gina Purtell, Allens Pond Wildlife Sanctuary
A slide-show highlighting the unique animals that breed here as well as how the staff along with community volunteers help to preserve wildlife habitat there. Learn about projects that involve piping plovers, osprey and diamondback terrapins. Hear about citizen science projects and habitat restoration occurring on the Sanctuary.

Workshop 4 – Scavengers of the Deep Sea Abyss
George R. Hampson, Oceanographer Emeritus, Woods Home Oceanographic Instution
Deep Sea cruise made in 1972–Deep Sea Dredging made with a large Oceanographic Ship within the Philippine Trench–depth 10,000 meters. Monster camera use to photograph what bottom critters came to our bait set on the bottom. The answer...You Might Be Surprised!

Workshop 5 – Sharks of New England with special emphasis on the Basking Shark
Carol “Krill” Carson, Biology Professor, Bridgewater State College
New England waters are home to many species of sharks that live and feed in our coastal waters. Two of the largest species that can be seen off Cape Cod are the great white shark and the basking shark. Learn how different and yet similar these two species are to one another. And learn how you can become involved in citizen science by becoming a member of NEBShark, the New England Basking Shark Project. Your efforts will help scientists better understand these amazing pelagic fish. Free NEBShark sighting materials will be provided to all program participants.

Workshop 6 – Climate Change and the Coast
Patricia Harcourt, Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve
Climate change is already affecting coastal areas! We will look at the latest research results and use computers and data sets to illustrate how warming and sea level rise affect oceans and coasts. Students will investigate the impacts of climate change on habitats, species and shorelines. We will end by highlighting solutions and actions to mitigate impacts.

Workshop 7 – Seal SOS and Turtle TLC: Conservation Through Rehabilitaton
Kathy Zagzebski, Executive Director, and Joanne Nicholson, Outreach Coordinator, National Marine Life Center
Presenters will introduce the concept of marine animal rehabilitation, show short videos, demonstrate concepts with model animals, and discuss how rehabilitation plays an important role in ocean conservation.

Workshop 8 – Wildlife Protection and Research: Life at the Beach
Jamie Bogart, Research Associate, Lloyd Center for the Environment
Learn about the coastal beach environment and it's endangered wildife, and the type of work performed by scientists on beaches. Participants will learn about the piping plover and diamondback terrapin (two familiar endangered species) , and a brief mention of waterbirds used for 'beached bird' studies.

Workshop 9 – North Atlantic Right Whales: Can We Save Them?
Nadine Lysiak, Postdoctoral Investigator, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
North Atlantic right whales are seen off the coast of MA each spring, and the population is seriously endangered. Today, the population size is estimated at approximately 400 individuals. In this workshop we will discuss right whales, the innovations used by scientists who study them, and the major issues that threaten the survival of right whales in the “urban ocean.”

Workshop 10 – Fish Habitat in Massachusetts – Do “green” projects always help?
Vin Malkoski, Sr. Marine Fisheries Biologist, MA Division of Marine Fisheries
Quality habitat for fish is under constant threat from a variety of sources and human activities, including projects that are perceived to be “green” or environmentally friendly. We will discuss general habitat requirements, the sources of environmental threats, potential impacts, and the steps taken to avoid or minimize the damage. We will also discuss mitigation and restoration.

Workshop 11 – The Role of Indicator Species in Determining Habitat Health
Sara Sampieri, Research Assistant / Graduate Student, SMAST-UMASS Dartmouth, Coastal Systems Program
Benthic infauna communities (those that live in the sediment at the bottom of an estuary) are considered important indicators of the health of estuarine ecosystems. This workshop will explore how scientists use benthic community structure and indicator species to determining habitat health. Come and discover the variety of organisms found in local estuaries! Use dissecting microscopes and compare the species found in healthy estuaries vs. degraded estuaries! Share your thoughts in a discussion about out how we can help to restore these dynamic ecosystems.

Workshop 12 – Dive to the Deep Ocean!
Carolyn Sheild, Science Teacher, Clarke Middle School, Lexington, Ma
Come hear from a teacher who dove in the Alvin submarine to the deep sea floor. See images of organisms that live in the deep sea and learn how they thrive on chemosynthesis instead of photosynthesis. What is it like to live on a boat for a month and dive in a submarine? Come to this workshop to find out more!

Workshop 13 – Underwater Explorations using Remotely Operated Vehicles
Eben Franks, Applications Engineer, Teledyne-Benthos, Inc., and Campbell “Buzz” Scott, Director and Founder, OceansWide
Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) are used for a wide range of underwater exploration and survey tasks ranging from marine archeology, maritime security and fisheries research to installation of sea-bed instruments and location and recovery of lost equipment, aircraft, ships and other objects. The presenters will give an overview of the different classes of underwater vehicles and present video and still images of some of the exciting discoveries they have made.

Workshop 14 – Where, when and why? Using acoustic tags to track animals in the ocean.
Greg Decelles, PhD Student, Umass Dartmouth – SMAST
Acoustic tags are a technological breakthrough that allows scientists to follow animals in the ocean. This presentation will explain what acoustic tags are, how they work, and what we have discovered by using them. Students will learn how to use acoustic tags by attaching them to real fish.

Workshop 15 – Greenhouse Gases and Heat Transfer
David J. Welty, Ph.D., Fairhaven High School Science and Engineering Academic Coordinator Ocean Explorium Science Education Specialist
The workshop will deal with how CO2 and water contribute to climate change through heat transfer by infrared radiation and convection.

Workshop 16 – Plankton: The good, the bad and the ugly
Jennifer Costa and Laurie Hellstrom, Ocean Explorium Educators
  Did you know that you can see plankton from space? Or that too much plankton can be harmful to the environment? Learn all about plankton and their role as the base of the food web in marine ecosystems. In this session you will model out the lives of the small and the drifting plankton, identify the productive zones of the ocean, and see how human interference can have consequences to natural systems.

Workshop 17 – Academic Adventures of A Lifetime with SEA
Carla Scocchi, SEA Admission Counselor and Mary Engels, SEA Science Coordinator Sea Education Association
SEA is the only program in the world to conduct blue water oceanographic research with students under sail. Students sail aboard the SSV Corwith Cramer or SSV Robert C. Seamans, 134’ brigantine tall ships, as full members of the crew on deck and in the lab for the academic adventure of a lifetime. High School summer programs for college credit are available. Upcoming cruises in the Atlantic, Caribbean, and Pacific Oceans will be spotlighted.

Workshop 18 – Horseshoe Crab Research Methods
Sarah Martinez, Horseshoe Crab Project Technician, Mass Audubon/Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary
Sarah will discuss the ongoing horseshoe crab research project at Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary, which is part of a regional study with collaborators from the University of Rhode Island, the National Park Service, and the MA Division of Marine Fisheries. She will cover the underlying conservation concerns driving the project and the methods we are using to survey their populations. Students will get an opportunity to practice tagging methods using molted shells.

Workshop 19 – Stellwagen Sanctuary in Jeopardy
Anne Smrcina, Education Coordinator, Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary
This workshop, modeled after a popular game show, will look at important living and cultural resources of New England’s only national marine sanctuary, threats to these resources, research projects to better understand these ocean treasures, and management strategies now underway.

Workshop 20 – Learning How to Dive
Staff from Bob’s Sea and Ski, New Bedford
This workshop will serve as an introduction to open water and SCUBA certification. You will also learn about the variety of sights and colors in New England waters.

Advance registration is required.
Please register by March 9, 2009.
Participation is limited to the first 400 paid registrants.
Confirmations and cancellations will be made via email ONLY.

Teachers may use the attached form to register or may register their students via email ([email protected]), but they must send a check before the March 9th deadline.

Cost: $10 per student includes registration materials and morning refreshments.
Participants must provide their own lunch or purchase lunch at the cafeteria. Please indicate on the registration sheet whether your group will be purchasing lunch. Students must be accompanied by their teacher. We recommend a ratio of one teacher for each ten students.
Workshops: There will be 20 workshops that will be repeated in each of the two time slots. Students will attend two workshops during the day in addition to the keynote address and final presentation. Workshop attendance will be assigned by MME on a first-come, first-served basis On the morning of the conference, workshop tickets will be provided to teachers to issue to their students. We prefer that a maximum of two students from each school attend an individual workshop during each time slot.

NOTE: Confirmations and snow cancellation information by email only. Please check your emails for key conference updates.

8:00 am Registration, Campus Center
8:45 am Introduction and Welcome, Main Auditorium
9:00 am Keynote Address – Danielle Cholewiak, Main Auditorium
9:30 am Break
9:45 am Workshop A
10:45 am Workshop B
11:45 am Keynote Address – Robert Michelson, Main Auditorium
12:15 pm Lunch
1:00 pm Adjourn

Register early to ensure your place at this popular conference.

Click here to download the registration sheet for teachers to register their students (116 KB)

Click here to download this information with the registration form as a pdf file (844 KB)

This page updated on September 4, 2011 10:54 am

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