Lady Elliot Island will become the classroom for a group of University of Newcastle Central Coast campus students, taking part in an educational and research field trip to the Great Barrier Reef this month.
The field trip is a major component of the Coral Reef Biology and Ecology course and aims to give first-hand experience of the environment where the students will work after complete the Bachelor of Science Marine Studies degree.
Marine Science and sustainable resource management are majors offered as part of the Bachelor of Science degree at the Central Coast campus, lecturer Dr Kenneth Zimmerman said.
“The students will examine the biological, ecological and geological aspects of one part of the Great Barrier Reef in order to gain a better understanding of this complex and unique environment,” Dr Zimmerman said.
“They will look at different marine organisms and ecosystems, to gain a better understanding of the reef ecosystem, and help them to apply this knowledge and experience in their future work.”
Rachel McIntyre from Chittaway Bay is one of 30 students, University staff and interested community members taking part in the field trip from 27 November to 6 December. She will use a $500 Hunter Environmental Institute Undergraduate Scholarship awarded earlier this month to buy diving equipment for the trip.
“I am due to finish at the end of this semester, so the field trip will be an excellent opportunity for me to test my knowledge and skills before I go out into the workforce.”
Dr Zimmerman takes groups of students, University staff and any interested individuals from the community, to Lady Elliot Island twice a year, in July and December. For more information contact Dr Zimmerman at Kenneth.firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo Opportunity: Ms McIntyre and Dr Zimmerman are available for photograph in the biology lab; Science Labs 1, University of Newcastle Central Coast campus, on Thursday 25 November 2010 at 3pm. High-quality underwater images from previous fieldtrips are also available by request.
Contact information: Leonie Brann, Media and Public Relations Officer, 02 4921 6856 or 0448 898 813.