COSEE at 2009 SACNAS - 12.15.2009

The COSEE Network had a significant presence at the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) Conference, held October 15 -18, 2009. In collaboration with SACNAS the COSEE Network co-sponsored an ocean science symposium, Sustainable Seas: An Interdisciplinary Approach to the Conservation and Management of Ocean Resources. Overview and Objectives. The complexity of the ocean suggests that researchers need to adopt interdisciplinary approaches to study the factors that may impact this critical ecosystem. In this session, university and government scientists will report on interdisciplinary research aimed at mediating human impacts and adopting sustainable use practices in marine ecosystems. Session Chair: Cory Garza, Assistant Professor, California State University, Monterey Bay. Session speakers are:

Damien Cie, Graduate Student
Scripps Institution of Oceanography
From the Beach to the Boardroom: Sustainable Management

Ana Pitchon, Assistant Professor
California State University, Dominguez Hills
The Risks and Realities of Pier Fishing in Los Angeles County

Mary Silver, Professor
California State University, Santa Cruz
Harmful Algal Blooms Protecting Ourselves from Shellfish Poisoning
(Replaced by Ginny Eckert, University of Alaska, Fairbanks)

The session structure included a presentation from the scientists followed by an opportunity for audience questions.

With the additional time and funding allowed through a new COSEE Central Coordinating Office (CCO) grant, we will attempt to structure a more robust presence at the next two conferences in an attempt to grow a larger COSEE presence within the SACNAS community. We will work to submit abstracts for and coordinate several sessions around the theme of ocean sciences and how to enter the field. This conference is mostly attended by undergraduate and graduate students so it is a wonderful recruiting opportunity for ocean sciences.

The COSEE Network plans to maintain a presence at the SACNAS conference for at least two more years (SACNAS 2010 in Anaheim and SACNAS 2011 in San Jose). We will continue to exhibit in the exhibit hall and propose sessions focused on ocean sciences content and opportunities for student attendees to interface with practicing ocean scientists.

The booth was staffed by CCO staff, who greeted passersby and engaged them in conversation to better understand the subjects represented by the professors, teachers and students along with where they are located. Based on the information gathered, booth staff attempted to connect attendees with COSEE Centers located near their homes. In cases when that was not feasible, we tried to offer the most productive solutions.

The following print materials were available for teachers in the COSEE Booth:

  • COSEE Center one page profiles
  • Materials from individual COSEE Centers
  • The booklet "EPO Guide for Scientists"
  • "Discovery of Sounds in the Sea" CD
  • COSEE Ocean Systems' recent TOS publication "Physical Oceanography Activities for the High School Classroom"
  • Lists of opportunities and funding available through COSEE Centers and related higher education institutions

COSEE branded give-aways included magnetic clips, pens and post-its.

An attempt was made to track the number of people who stopped by the booth and the number of people engaged in conversations about the COSEE Network. The team conversed with over 150 professors, teachers and students: several high school and undergraduate teachers indicated that they would use the physical oceanography activities in their classes. while students were extremely interested in internships and research experience opportunities.

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