Lake Ontario Lake Guardian Workshop 2013
Great Lakes Coastal Youth Education - News
Shipboard Science Workshop Aboard the R/V Lake Guardian
Lake Ontario - July 6-13, 2013

Application Deadline: April 30, 2013


The Center for Great Lakes Literacy, Great Lakes Sea Grant Network, and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency invite 4th-12th grade teachers and non-formal educators to participate in a week-long Shipboard and Shoreline Science workshop aboard the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency's 180-foot research vessel R/V Lake Guardian. Funding for this program is provided through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.

Fifteen teachers will be selected from around the Great Lakes basin for the cruise. Workshop participants will receive:
  • Stipend
  • Housing and meals onboard the R/V Lake Guardian for six nights/seven days at no cost to the participant.
  • Exemplary Great Lakes and marine curricula and resources.
  • Long-term support from and communication with Great Lakes Sea Grant educators.
Educators will work beside scientists, participating in Great Lakes research and stopping in ports for additional science experiences. In addition to shipboard and shoreline science, participants will examine curricula and resources and explore classroom activities relating to the Great Lakes and oceans.

The workshop offers first-hand explorations of Lake Ontario ecology, geology, geography, weather, and biogeochemical processes, with particular emphasis on human impacts. Participants will be involved in the collection of planktonic and benthic organisms as well as water quality data collection and analysis. This is Great Lakes learning at its best!

Itineraries & Contacts

Lake Ontario, July 6-13, 2013

For more information about the cruise itinerary or questions about the application process, contact:

Helen Domske, Coastal Education Specialist
New York Sea Grant
229 Jarvis Hall
SUNY at Buffalo
Buffalo, NY 14260-4400
Phone: (716) 645-3610
Fax: (716) 645-3612
E-mail: (

Facilities & Logistics

The Research Vessel

The R/V Lake Guardian, operated by the U.S. EPAs Chicago-based Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO), conducts monitoring programs that sample the water, aquatic life, sediments, and air in order to assess the health of the Great Lakes ecosystem by using state-of-the-art data collection techniques and instruments during the biannual spring and summer surveys.

The R/V Lake Guardian is the U.S. EPAs largest Great Lakes research and monitoring vessel. It is a zero-discharge ship.


Participants will have room and board in the crew's quarters of the vessel, 2 or 3 berths per room with limited space for gear. Rooms include bunks, desks, lockers, and computer LAN connections. Most quarters have bathrooms shared between two rooms. Onboard recreation, exercise, and meal facilities are available.

Graduate Credits

Graduate-level credit may be available upon request. Participants receiving graduate credit are responsible for all tuition and fees. Please let us know if you are interested in graduate-level credit.

Application Process

Applications are invited from:
  • Teachers of grades 4th-12th from the Great Lakes basin who are willing to incorporate Great Lakes materials into their classrooms.
  • Educators from non-formal educational institutions that have Great Lakes exhibits or conduct related programming at their facilities.
Participants will be selected to provide regional geographic distribution and ethnic diversity. Teachers who are Native American or members of groups underrepresented in science and/or who teach significant numbers of students who are members of such groups are encouraged to apply.

Application materials required:
  • Complete the online application form*.
  • Personal Statement and Supporting Documentation. See application form.
  • Letter of Reference. All applicants must have a letter of reference from their principal or supervisor documenting the applicants professional qualifications for the workshop and indicating that the administrator will support efforts to integrate Great Lakes/ocean science topics into the curriculum as these topics apply to state science standards.
* We prefer to receive your application electronically. If all else fails, send it the traditional way... Print the online application, fill out, and mail or fax to:

Helen Domske, Coastal Education Specialist
New York Sea Grant
229 Jarvis Hall
SUNY at Buffalo
Buffalo, NY 14260-4400
Phone: (716) 645-3610
Fax: (716) 645-3612

Application Deadlines:

Completed application with required principal or supervisor signature must be received by April 30, 2013. In selecting individuals for participation and otherwise in the administration of this workshop, Center for Great Lakes Literacy will not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, religion, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, or marital status. All selected applicants are required to view the Safety Aboard the R/V Lake Guardian video available at: prior to participation.

Workshop Objectives

The cruise is designed to promote Great Lakes sciences in formal and informal education, as well as forge lasting relationships between science researchers and educators.

Participants will:
  • Interact with scientists conducting research during the cruise; collect and analyze data en route.
  • Synthesize information and provide examples of how water characteristics interact with land, life, weather, and human activities.
  • Infuse Great Lakes information into existing curriculum or informal education media using traditional and/or electronic means.

Participants will be expected to:
  • Develop a reflective journal based on activities.
  • Participate in research protocol development and implementation.
  • Complete a plan for continuation of course ideas, scientist interactions, or stewardship activities with their students.
  • Participate in all aspects of program evaluation.
  • Take part in a pre- and post-trip teleconference. Dates to be determined.

Center for Great Lakes Literacy staff will:
  • Introduce teachers to regional Great Lakes research topics and high-quality curricular and educational resources.
  • Facilitate interactions between teachers and Great Lakes science researchers.
  • Promote inquiry learning through existing curricular and educational resources, aligning with National Science Education Standards.
  • Facilitate the development, exchange and implementation of curricula and lessons for participants classrooms.
  • Provide for long-term support, evaluation and communication between Center for Great Lakes Literacy and workshop participants.

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