Great Lakes Ecosystem Education Exchange: Empowering Educators
Publications: Success Stories - Extension (2020)

Teachers discover Great Lakes Basin Bin resources. Credit: Emily Sheridan, NYSDEC

Equipping K-12 educators with resources via NYSG strategic partnerships to impact educational spaces in the Great Lakes watershed


Monica L. Miles, PhD, NYSG Great Lakes Literacy Educator, E:, P: 716-645-3610

Buffalo, NY, March 2, 2020 - There is a national push to provide K-12 students with greater opportunities to engage in real-world science experiences and to encourage them to consider entering the STEM (science, technology, engineering, math-based) workforce. 

In line with this interest, New York Sea Grant (NYSG) and New York State’s Department of Environmental Conservation developed strategic partnerships to apply their unique and combined knowledge and resources to create NY’s Great Lakes Ecosystem Education Exchange. Also known as GLEEE, this Exchange provides resources to K-12 educators to foster the next generation of environmentally-literate, stewardship-minded citizens and environmental professionals. 

GLEEE provides professional development and networking support for incorporating Great Lakes content into participants’ educational practice. 

For example:

• The GLEEE website, launched in late May 2017, is filled with content-rich curriculum resources to support place-based Great Lakes education — the GLEEE website has since attracted 7,818 visitors.

• Great Lakes Basin Bins serve as a hands-on resource for teachers located at 15 sites throughout NY — Basin Bin host sites report 67% of the educators that used them found the resources to be helpful with increasing Great Lakes knowledge and awareness of issues. 

• In 2019, NYSG offered in-person professional development to support educators with curricula development and designing and facilitating stewardship projects in their local areas in New York State — 120 educators with the potential to teach up to 28,000 students to be Great Lakes stewards participated in GLEEE-related programs.  

GLEEE Basin Bin resources were shared at a teacher workshop on invasive species. Credit: Emily Sheridan, NYSDEC

Through this variety of resources and professional development opportunities, NYSG extends GLEEE-related impact into K-12 educational spaces with real-world and timely information to increase Great Lakes knowledge and stewardship throughout the New York watershed.

More on NY’s Great Lakes Ecosystem Education Exchange at:

Related Article: On YouTube: Exploring the Great Lakes with a New York Sea Grant Basin Bin

The Sea Grant Focus Area for this project is Environmental Literacy and Workforce Development in New York. 

Project Partners:  

• New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
• 15 Great Lakes Basin Bin host sites

More Info: New York Sea Grant

New York Sea Grant (NYSG), a cooperative program of Cornell University and the State University of New York (SUNY), is one of 34 university-based programs under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Sea Grant College Program.

Since 1971, NYSG has represented a statewide network of integrated research, education and extension services promoting coastal community economic vitality, environmental sustainability and citizen awareness and understanding about the State’s marine and Great Lakes resources.

Through NYSG’s efforts, the combined talents of university scientists and extension specialists help develop and transfer science-based information to many coastal user groups—businesses and industries, federal, state and local government decision-makers and agency managers, educators, the media and the interested public.

The program maintains Great Lakes offices at Cornell University, SUNY Buffalo, SUNY Oswego and the Wayne County Cooperative Extension office in Newark. In the State's marine waters, NYSG has offices at Stony Brook University in Long Island, Brooklyn College and Cornell Cooperative Extension in NYC and Kingston in the Hudson Valley.

For updates on Sea Grant activities: has RSS, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube links. NYSG offers a free e-list sign up via for its flagship publication, NY Coastlines/Currents, which is published quarterly. Our program also produces an occasional e-newsletter,"NOAA Sea Grant's Social Media Review," via its blog,

New York Sea Grant Home *  NYS Department of Environmental Conservation Home

This website was developed with funding from the Environmental Protection Fund, in support of the Ocean and Great Lakes Ecosystem Conservation Act of 2006. 

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