Ocean Defenders Program


For our weekend-long, overnight Ocean Defenders Program, we’ll be welcoming 10 BIPOC girls and gender minorities ages 15-18 to live aboard Field School’s R/V Garvin for the weekend, learning about marine conservation, trying new outdoor exploration skills, participating in a shark research expedition, and being mentored by diverse women in science!


  • October 15-16
  • 2 days, overnight
  • Miami, FL
  • 10 seats
  • Free!
  • Drop-off/pick-up times and locations to be determined
  • No prior knowledge or swimming skills needed


  • Assist on a day-long shark research expedition, helping researchers perform work-ups on sharks we catch, including measuring, tagging, and more
  • Build and set underwater video systems called BRUVs (Baited Remote Underwater Video Systems) on Biscayne
  • Get hands-on with coastal species during a beach seine, where we’ll use a specialized net to see what organisms are living nearby
  • Learn about careers in marine science, and what it’s like to be BIPOC in marine science and careers
  • Test water for different pollutants and learn about water chemistry in Biscayne Bay
  • Stay overnight in bunks on Field School’s research vessel, R/V Garvin, which will be moored at a dock
  • Become a marine biologist for a weekend!

Partner Groups

This program is being offered by Terranaut Club, Minorities in Shark Science (MISS), the American Shark Conservancy, and Field School, and will be led by individuals from all of these programs.


This program is open to BIPOC girls and gender minorities ages 15-18 who live in south Florida. Participants from other areas are welcome to apply for our wait list.

How To Apply

Participants must be nominated by an adult that knows them well, including parents/guardians, teachers, community group leaders, and more, by September 10th. All nominees will be notified of our decision on September 13th.

Photos from our last Ocean Defenders Program in 2019 for 12-15 year olds from Girls Inc. Sarasota

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