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Nature’s Academy’s Dana Pounds Named as Marine Science Educator of the Year

dana pounds nmea 2016 educator of the year awardThis July, Nature’s Academy attended the National Marine Educators Association (NMEA) annual conference this year in Orlando. Our organization was excited to participate alongside other formal and non formal educators to promote awareness and education of natural habitats.

This exciting week-long event ended with Nature’s Academy hosting a teacher workshop to highlight some of the opportunities we provide for our students and organizations, showcasing our Edventures. Participants engaged in multiple field experiences including mangrove kayaking, shark dissection, water quality investigation, seagrass dip netting and a coastal clean-up.

As is our custom, the data collected for our program was uploaded to our organization’s Citizen Science Database. Just one more fabulous way we try to give back to the community!

At the annual conference, the Florida Marine Science Educators Association named our very own Founder and Executive Director, Dana Pounds, as the 2016 Marine Science Educator of the Year! This award is given to an educator who repeatedly displays dedication to promoting and developing marine science in Florida.

dana pounds nmea 2016 educator of the year awardDana has been an educator and pioneer in the field of informal and marine education for over 20 years. In 2007, Dana founded the Nature’s Academy as a nonprofit organization in an effort to develop scientific literacy in the local community. Dana has since developed partnerships with Florida’s Pinellas and Manatee County school districts to provide experiential learning to students as a supplement for in-class learning. Her ability to fundraise and promote outreach programs has allowed her to reach over 100,000 students in various organizations. Through her efforts, thousands of pounds of litter have been removed from local shorelines, numerous schools have seen significant gains in science literacy and Dana has earned countless awards for her commitment to environmental education.

We are proud to recognize the great work Dana has done for our local community, the marine science community, and by extension, the world and we’re excited to see what’s next! Join us in celebrating this wonderful achievement for Dana and for our organization!