Tampa Bay students learn science by exploring outdoors - WFLA News Channel 8

Tampa Bay students learn science by exploring outdoors

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Some Tampa Bay area students put down the books and spent a day outdoors learning about science.

It’s at the heart of an environmental outreach program at Hillsborough Community College. For almost 40 years, the program has infused the minds of students from kindergarten to high school by taking students on an exploration of nature.

"What we're really doing is supplementing the science and ocean education of the schools around the area," said Sean Nordquist, HCC Education/Outreach Coordinator.

The program is designed to expose students to the outdoors where they can learn more about the environment while being surrounded by it.  Students are taken around the waters of Tampa Bay while learning about ecology, biology and understanding of the natural areas of Florida.

"They get a better picture of the larger natural environment around the city that they live in and grew up in," said Nordquist.

The main goal is to spark student’s interest in marine biology or other sciences.

HCC has three Environmental Studies.

Centers located at Cockroach Bay, English Creek, and Upper Tampa Bay Park.

"We look at the future and what the jobs are going to be and what the important discoveries are going to be, and they're going to be made by people who have a good handle on basic science literacy," said Nordquist.

"Ocean literacy is a big part of that especially living in Florida and Tampa Bay because it's such a big part of our lifestyle," Nordquist continued.

The outreach program is year round, and it does cost $10 per student on the field trip.

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