From the community

College of the Atlantic Partners with New York Harbor School

Posted Feb. 08, 2014, at 10:47 a.m.

The collaboration will enhance ecological education in New York City.

BAR HARBOR, ME – College of the Atlantic (COA) has received a $134,000 grant from the One Year Fund to develop a partnership with the New York Harbor School (NYHS). The grant will aid in improving applied science education and college preparation skills for socioeconomically disadvantaged New York City high school students.

“The One Year Fund was set up through the Brooke Astor Fund for New York City Education, and I think Mrs. Astor would be very pleased about this collaboration between two places she loved: New York and Mount Desert Island,” said COA’s Dean of Institutional Advancement, Lynn Boulger.

The NYHS was founded in 2002 to prepare public school students for marine and environmentally-related careers. The rigorous, college preparatory curriculum is based on environmental stewardship and skill-building activities utilizing New York City’s waterways. There are currently 416 students enrolled in NYHS, generally between the ages of 14 and 18, from all five boroughs of New York City.

The partnership between COA and NYHS aims to develop clear pathways where the interest, knowledge, confidence, and skills related to environmental science careers have been fostered and nurtured. The goal is to increase environmental literacy among potential NYHS applicants through active collaboration with COA students, and ensure students graduate more prepared for the experience of college.

The grant will allow COA students to do their student teaching at NYHS. These students will be in the process of completing their certification requirements for high school science teaching. They will spend a fifteen-week semester working alongside one of the many talented marine science teachers at NYHS in classes such as aquaculture, marine biology research, marine systems technology, and ocean engineering.

Said COA President Darron Collins, “These subject areas fit perfectly with the abilities of COA students, as the college has more than 40 years of experience teaching hands-on marine science.”

NYHS students will be able to come to COA to take part in the Summer Field Institute programs, which are rigorous, interdisciplinary college-credit summer programs. All programs have a component that takes place on the COA campus. In addition, students spend time on extended trips to the college’s island research stations, organic farms, or the Allagash Wilderness Waterway in northern Maine.

NYHS students will work with COA faculty, alumni, and other community members as interns, mentors, and partners.

“The grant will aid in improving applied science education and college preparation skills for socioeconomically disadvantaged students, with the overall long-term goal to grow the number and quality of minority students in the conservation and environmental sciences fields,” said Collins.

About College of the Atlantic

College of the Atlantic was founded in 1969 on the premise that education should go beyond understanding the world as it is, to enabling students to actively shape its future. A leader in experiential education and environmental stewardship, COA has pioneered a distinctive interdisciplinary approach to learning—human ecology—that develops the kinds of creative thinkers and doers needed by all sectors of society in addressing the compelling and growing needs of our world. For more information, visit http://www.coa.edu.

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