By Jayme Taylor, Communications Manager
In mid-May, 16 students from Elizabeth Devitt’s marine biology class at Clover Park High School left the classroom and boarded the Carlyn, a 61 foot sailing research vessel operated by Salish Sea Expeditions.
Prior to the trip, the Salish team assisted the students in designing a research project as part of their science curriculum. Throughout the trip, students collected samples and get to know the marine ecosystem—analyzing as they went, and reflecting on whether their data supported or refuted their initial predictions. Students also had the opportunity to check out the microscopic plants and animals and observe seals, sea lions and marine birds.
On the first day of the adventure, students and their instructors made it to Jones Island in the San Juan channel, where they docked for the evening and slept both ashore and onboard the Carlyn. From there they traveled to Orcas Island and Lopez Island, where they learned about local ecology and natural history.
During the expedition, students collaborated by helping to raise the sails, cooking meals for the group, analyzing samples, setting up camp, or helping the Captain and crew clean the vessel at the end of the day.
The trip was significantly funded by Salish Sea Expeditions, who provide scholarship assistance to schools that serve a student population where 50 percent or more students qualify for free and reduced lunch. In May 2010, 68.7 percent of Clover Park’s students qualified for free and reduced lunch. Salish scholarship funds come from individual donations and regional foundations.
For more information about Salish Sea Expeditions, visit salish.org/Expeditions.
To view more photos from the expedition, visit www.flickr.com/photos/