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Students Will Earn College Credit in Aquarium Course this Fall

The new course, offered through Orange Coast College, will be taught by Aquarium educators and include weekly lectures, lab work, and field trips.

Pacific Visions exterior

Pacific Visions exterior view from the Aquarium's front lawn. © 2019 Tom Bonner

August 1, 2022

The Aquarium of the Pacific has partnered with Orange Coast College (OCC) to offer a college-level course for thirty high school and college students during the fall 2022 semester. The course, Ocean Conservation and Community Science, will focus on ocean conservation and the roles that aquariums can play in public education, research, and behavior changes.

Classes will take place in person at the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach on Tuesday and Thursday evenings from August 30 to December 15, 2022. The course will include weekly lectures and lab work and optional field trips on weekends to visit other facilities, the Los Cerritos Wetlands, and the Aquarium’s Sea Turtle Monitoring community science site on the San Gabriel River.

Aquarium President and CEO Dr. Peter Kareiva will be the class’s lead instructor. He will be joined by other Aquarium staff members, who will share their education and conservation expertise. “There is no better place to learn about marine conservation and marine wildlife than an aquarium,” Dr. Kareiva says. “I am hoping this is the beginning of an expanding partnership with local colleges and universities, whereby we collaborate to provide hands-on engaged learning and recruit students to our course who might otherwise never consider science careers. In this case we have the added bonus that local students will hear from aquarium staff members who DO conservation.”

This course is open to college and high school students interested in taking an entry-level college course for credit in the biological sciences discipline. No prerequisites are required. Students will receive three college credits and a transcript from OCC. The Aquarium is providing scholarships to the enrolled high school students to cover the course enrollment fees and parking. Information about the course is available on the Aquarium’s website.