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OUTREACH:NOAA's Office of Education Meets Upward Bound Students

Published August 2013

During the summer of 2013, NOAA Education engaged with the Upward Bound program. Upward Bound is federally funded by the US Department of Education and provides students from low-income and/or "potential first-generation college students" with better skills and opportunities to attend college.

Specifically the Upward Bound program administered by The College Board in cooperation with The Catholic University of America has been working with students in the target schools of Anacostia, Ballou, and H.D. Woodson High Schools in Washington, DC. On July 18th a NOAA career panel convened at Catholic University to discuss a wide variety of science careers available to the junior and senior level high school students.

Lisa Discussing the role of Env. Policy
Lisa Nakamura discussing the role of Env. Policy to Upward Bound students
Panelists included: Dr. Maria Murray (Office of Education), Dr. DaNa Carlis (National Weather Service), Martin Yapur (NOAA Satellite and Information Service), Tyra Brown (National Weather Service), and LCDR Sarah Mrozek (National Ocean Service).

Also on July 18th a group of rising sophomores from the Upward Bound program went on a field trip over to the eastern Shore of Maryland to the NOAA laboratory in Oxford, MD hosted by Bart Merrick from the NOAA Chesapeake Bay office. Students engaged with a range of NOAA professionals on how NOAA related disciplines can lead to a diverse array of career tracks including studying oyster diseases, understanding ecosystems of commercially important fisheries, communicating complex data through computer visualizations, and translating science to policymakers. Students also had an opportunity to seine for fish to explore how different habitats affected the community of species.

Students on field trip
Upward Bound students on a field trip on the eastern Shore of Maryland at the NOAA laboratory in Oxford, MD

Later during the summer, several NOAA employees in the National Weather Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service mentored a number of students from the Upward Bound program. Students shadowed these NOAA employees for a week to learn about their jobs, to gain exposure to NOAA science, and to receive advice on pathways to different careers.

The plans are to continue working with the Upward Bound program to foster the next generation of NOAA scientists.

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