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Center for Engineering, Science and Mathematics Education

Website Update

Ocean Outreach/Education Specialist

Ocean outreach and education involves many revolving parts that may be managed by one person or a team of specialists. These programs aim to increase science-based awareness of environmental issues and promote community action. Ocean outreach and education can mean putting together restoration events, like removing invasive plants and planting native ones, or beach clean-ups. It could also mean anything from running a booth at a farmers’ market to teaching a lesson at local elementary schools. Although marine education programs often work with children to engage the next generation of environmental stewards, outreach can focus more broadly on the community as a whole. 


High school coursework:

  • Leadership - environmental outreach and education requires strong communication and leadership skills to encourage people to care about the ocean
  • Science - ocean education is most helpful when it has a strong foundation in scientific principles
  • English - as an outreach/education specialist, you may spend much of your time applying for grants and composing emails to support outreach events


Classes you could take at Cal Poly:
Center your college coursework around scientific communication.

  • MSCI 440: Communicating Ocean Sciences to Informal Audiences
  • NR 328: Environmental Leadership and Community Engagement
  • SCM 302: The Learn By Doing Experience


Ways to get experience:

  • Work as a docent
    • Reach out to your local aquarium or the ranger’s station at a nature preserve, beach, or park about docent programs. This can give you great experience in educating people about the environment.
  • Attend environmental outreach events!
    • Keep an eye out in your local newspaper or parks & rec department newsboards for restoration or clean-up events and get hands-on field work experience

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