GCE Outreach and Education


Schoolyard LTER quadrat sampling
Schoolyard LTER quadrat sampling
(photo courtesy of Trisha Hembree)

The goal of GCE outreach is to enhance scientific understanding of Georgia coastal ecosystems by the public, coastal managers, and scientists. To this end, we run a schoolyard program, support the Georgia Coastal Research Council (GCRC), train undergraduate and graduate students, and interact with scientists inside and outside the LTER network. These components of our outreach program are described below.

Georgia Coastal Research Council

We provide outreach to coastal resource managers by partially supporting the GCRC, which is headed by Merryl Alber. The GCRC has 103 affiliates representing 17 academic units and 10 state and federal agencies. It promotes science-based management of coastal resources by hosting workshops, assisting management agencies with scientific assessments, and distributing information on coastal issues. GCRC staff meet regularly with managers in the Coastal Resources Division of the Georgia Dept of Natural Resources and respond to technical requests (i.e. requests related to climate change, water quality, and identification of marine species). The GCRC website (www.gcrc.uga.edu), which is linked to the GCE site, features a frequently updated announcement page and has more than 1000 pages and documents plus 1600 external links. (more information)

Schoolyard LTER

The GCE Schoolyard program provides critical in-service training for K-12 educators in field ecology, immersing science and math teachers in hands-on research activities in the field to enable them to bring lessons and actual research data back to the classroom. From 2000 to 2008, over 50 teachers participated in one or more sessions of the GCE S-LTER program, representing 113 teacher slots and a collective impact on 11,278 students. Teachers split their time between doing research alongside GCE scientists and graduate students and discussing ways to implement the information in their classrooms. (more information)

Additional Outreach

The goal of GCE outreach is to enhance scientific understanding of Georgia coastal ecosystems by the public, coastal managers, and scientists. GCE scientists speak directly to the public in a variety of forums regularly giving seminars and public presentations, contributing articles to newsletters and other popular publications, and talking to the media about coastal issues. GCE personnel on Sapelo Island routinely provide tours of the site to visitors to both the Sapelo Island National Estuarine Research Reserve and the UGA Marine Institute. (more information)


This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under grants OCE-9982133, OCE-0620959, OCE-1237140 and OCE-1832178. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in the material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.