COI has great relationships with our local educational institutions.
Working closely with Professor David Schwartz of Cabrillo College Earth and Marine Science departments, COI has developed a training course to instruct in field survey tools and techniques.
Students from the marine science classes have an opportunity to earn extra credit for the class by documenting the number and types of debris on our beaches to a NOAA research protocol and practice basic field assessment and data recording.
COI is in early stages of research into Plastic to Fuel conversion (PTF) with the IDEASS program of UC Santa Cruz to validate energy use and investigate the potential to create toxins in the process.
The class meets 8 sessions in a semester. It includes an overview, classroom instruction, and four field survey practices. It finishes off in the classroom for data entry and public outreach practice.
Students are encouraged to take their presentations to outside groups to share the community impact of the program and raise awareness of plastic pollution.
The program has evolved through 8 semesters of trial and is in the process of being shared with other organizations and schools in ocean centric communities.
Students from this training have become involved as volunteers for COI. Some have gained experience on our expeditions and are on the path to be our instructors. Graduates from these programs are the first to be considered for future expeditions.
Future expeditions will have opportunities for greater public involvement.