At BIOS, we believe that ocean science for human good involves not only research with tangible benefits for communities and the environment, but also education programs that highlight the many ways our lives are connected with the ocean. We view education as a crucial part of ocean science research, helping to translate the work of our faculty into meaningful experiences for visitors, students, teachers, and Bermuda residents.
BIOS’s Ocean Academy is focused on Bermudian youth and is a key part of our mission to conduct ocean science for human good. Each year, thousands of students and their teachers are impacted by these programs, which cultivate curiosity and respect for the world around us, complement the school curricula with locally relevant material, and expose Bermuda’s youth to ocean-related opportunities essential to the growth and development of our island nation.
The five programs comprising Ocean Academy are interwoven in a manner that serves Bermudian youth of increasing age in a logical progression of offerings and opportunities. Students are introduced to Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM subjects) in exciting ways using tangible examples from the ocean. The goal is comprehensive: while we aim to encourage the best and brightest to pursue careers in STEM fields, we also aim to inspire in all participants an expanded understanding of their environment, and to empower them with the skills necessary for success in the modern world.
Many of these skills are gained during resume-building summer internships such as the Bermuda Program, which provides Bermudian students aged 18+ with the unique opportunity to broaden their knowledge of marine and atmospheric sciences by taking part in active research at BIOS. In fact, BIOS was ranked in the top 10 non-profit internships for 2012 by Vault.com, alongside the Smithsonian Institution and the Chicago Children’s Museum.
Here are what some of the past interns at BIOS have to say about their experiences:
“I was an intern for the BEACON lab [where] I was able to design and execute my own experiment. I learned many new skills this summer that I know will be crucial in my future career as a marine biologist. This experience will open many doors for me in this field and the connections I made will last a lifetime. These two summers have inspired me in so many ways.” – Laura Reid, 2012 Intern
“As a Bermuda Program intern I have learned a great deal of information about corals and marine life in general. I have been able to develop many new skills including SCUBA diving, research, lab operations and protocol, and operating various kinds of lab equipment. I would not have passed up this experience for the world. It has been extremely enjoyable and educational. If you are keen for science, this internship is for you.” – Kascia White, 2007-2012 Bermuda Program Intern
“The Bermuda Program has given me loads of opportunities which ultimately will benefit me in the future as I look to progress in a scientific career. Working at the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences this summer has been both fun and educational and is an experience not to be missed.” – Alex Godfrey, 2012 Bermuda Program Intern
To learn about BIOS’s Ocean Academy, please visit www.bios.edu/education. You can find out about the Bermuda Program, including what internship opportunities are available this summer, by visiting www.bios.edu/education/bermuda-program. BIOS also has current summer internship opportunities for Eckerd College students, as well as undergraduates participating in the Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program.
BIOS is also debuting additional educational resources and programs to better meet the needs of both local and international communities of teachers and students, including:
After many months of research and preparation, the new BIOS website went live this month (still at www.bios.edu), giving visitors a clearer understanding of the breadth and depth of exciting research that takes place at BIOS. Multimedia features provide additional content that will be updated regularly, offering multiple reasons to visit the website frequently and see what’s new.
BIOS has a presence on a multiple social media sites:
- Twitter (BIOSstation). The BIOS twitter feed is updated daily with news about BIOS scientists and research, as well as ocean-science news from around the world.
- Facebook (BIOS-Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences). The BIOS Facebook page highlights events at BIOS, from activities aboard the R/V Atlantic Explorer to recent faculty publications in scientific journals.
- Blogspot (bios-research.blogspot.com for science-related blogs, and biosoceanacademy.blogspot.com for BIOS education and Ocean Academy blogs). The BIOS Research blog is where BIOS researchers and technicians offer insight into their various research projects, both in BIOS labs and in the field. The Ocean Academy blog gives readers a front-row seat as “BioNauts” explore a variety of ocean science topics.
New this year, the BIOS Educational Diving Program offers SCUBA training for students aged 12+. SCUBA is an extremely useful educational tool, teaching many skills and concepts that reinforce classroom physics, chemistry, and biology lessons; fostering a mature, safety conscious attitude in students; providing a gateway to viewing undersea habitats; and permitting the collection of basic data and the generation of simple research project reports. To find out all the details, please visit www.bios.edu/education/educational-diving.