(CMR) Students who wish to participate in the upcoming Caribbean Marine Ecology Camp have the opportunity to earn one of 18 scholarships from the Central Caribbean Marine Institute (CCMI) to cover the camp expenses.
With funding from various supporters, need-based scholarships are available, covering the fee for camps and the flights to and from Little Cayman.
Organizers said with Cayman’s borders still closed to regular travel, the popular camp will be offered during the mid-term break from February 13-20 and Easter break, April 5-1, for local students ages 13-17.
Six scholarships are available for the February camp through a grant from the Edmund F and Virginia B Ball Foundation and several local donors.
Twelve scholarships will be available for the April camp session through support from the R3 Cayman Foundation, which organizers say are eager to support students that have a passion for marine life and who would benefit from this opportunity.
CCMI’s Director of Research, Dr. Gretchen Goodbody-Gringley, said offering scholarships to local students is very important to CCMI.
“At CCMI, we believe the link between research and education is critical to protecting and restoring our coral reefs. Engaging Caymanian students with the research and restoration efforts of our team at the Little Cayman Research Centre enables us to combine incredibly topical and important marine research with local education,” Goodbody-Gringley said.
The research director added that “conservation truly begins with understanding what we are striving to protect. We strongly believe that every young Caymanian should have the opportunity to learn about the marine environment that surrounds them. Providing scholarships is key to achieving this goal.”
Camp participants will spend a week scuba diving and snorkeling at some of the world’s most stunning coral reefs. They will be learning about tropical marine ecology and conservation during this interactive program.
Students will benefit from classroom sessions as well as hands-on activities and frequent interaction with experts in marine ecology, including the CCMI researcher team.
CCMI said divers and non-divers are accepted into the program, and returning campers are also welcomed.
One of the R3 scholars who attended a one-week residential program with CCMI in August 2020, Jovian, said, “The course changes how you look at the world and how much humans have affected it.”
Registration is on a rolling basis, and interest to participate in the camps can be sent to [email protected]. The February camp is also open for general enrollment, and the cost for students to attend the camp is US $2395.00, with flights to Little Cayman not included.
Further details about the Caribbean Marine Ecology Course and the scholarship applications can be found at https://tinyurl.com/cmec2021.