Tier Two Winner

Ocean Discovery Institute: Transforming Young Lives Through Science

Ocean Discovery Institute

Ocean Discovery Institute uses science to empower students, from a single urban community, to transform their lives and ultimately our world as E-STEM leaders. Our model uses marine environments as a platform for teaching all disciplines of STEM, and consists of programs that follow young people from elementary through college, and into careers in E-STEM. Programming is paired with access to mentors and other tools students need to overcome challenges they face growing up in underserved communities. Ultimately, these students are becoming the leaders we need to develop solutions that will make a real difference in our world.

Judges Comment

“The Ocean Discovery Institute receives one of our Tier 2 winner awards this year for its impressive learning and education outcomes, unique long-term student engagement, and forward thinking evaluation and pedagogical approaches. The Ocean Discovery Institute’s Leaders Programs have resulted in 60% of students majoring in E-STEM fields, with those young people being eight times as likely to graduate from college than their peers. Students of this program have access to a wide range of technologies that have been meaningfully embedded in the learning process, such as wave-modeling technology in R Studio and a turtle by-catch reduction technology young people helped create. Perhaps most importantly, the Ocean Discovery Institute invites young people to stay engaged over long periods of time – from as early as 3rd grade all the way through high school. This opportunity for long-term involvement is a very inspiring and unique feature of the program. Mentors play a strong role in working with students and supporting their science learning over the years as well. The Ocean Discovery Institute successfully involves alumni who are interested in supporting the next generation of learners, whether through mentoring, volunteering as instructors, or assisting with fieldwork.”