Physics teacher Douglas LaVigne will soon be leaving the classroom for the open sea. After a competitive, nationwide application and interview process, LaVigne was selected as the Teacher at Sea on Expedition 323 of the JOIDES Resolution, the recently refurbished drilling and research vessel supported by the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP).
Scientific expeditions on the JOIDES Resolution resumed in March 2009. Lavigne will be participating in the Bering Sea project which departs on July 5, 2009 from Victoria, British Columbia and ends on September 4, 2009 in Yokohama, Japan.
LaVigne, of Acworth, Ga., is a physics teacher at South Cobb High School in Austell, Ga. At the school, which has approximately 2,200 students in grades nine through 12, LaVigne has coached soccer, worked with the science and robotics clubs along with a club that allows the students to assist in rescuing abandoned and abused pets. Prior to becoming a teacher, LaVigne obtained a Bachelors degree in Secondary Education and a Masters in Education from Kennesaw State University.
“Teaching science is about more than learning facts and formulas,” said LaVigne. “It is a process which helps us understand the natural world, and sometimes we lose sight of that process when we teach. I have made it a goal to get involved in doing science, and bring that to my students. By seeing how science and scientists work, I hope I can inspire my students to pursue a career in science or at least leave high school with a better understanding of what science does and can do for us.”
Through the Teacher at Sea program, LaVigne will have the opportunity to learn shipboard science alongside the expedition’s science party and translate his learning experiences for students, families and the general public through the creation of blogs, live video conferencing from the ship and classroom activities.
“Douglas impressed us with his enthusiasm for his students, passion for teaching, strong science background, multitude of ideas and comfort level with new technologies,” said Sharon Cooper, assistant director of Deep Earth Academy. “We are excited to have him on board and look forward to all that he will accomplish during the Bering Expedition.”
For more information on Expedition 323, click here.
About Consortium for Ocean Leadership
Ocean Leadership is a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit organization that represents 95 of the leading public and private ocean research education institutions, aquaria and industry with the mission to advance research, education and sound ocean policy. The organization also manages ocean research and education programs in areas of scientific ocean drilling, ocean observing, ocean exploration and ocean partnerships.
About Integrated Ocean Drilling Program
The JOIDES Resolution is a research vessel with unique capabilities for exploring and monitoring the subseafloor; it operates as part of the international Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP). IODP is supported by two lead agencies, the U.S. National Science Foundation and Japan’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology. Additional program support comes from the European Consortium for Ocean Research Drilling (ECORD), India (Ministry of Earth Sciences), the People’s Republic of China (Ministry of Science and Technology), the Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources, and the Australian-New Zealand IODP Consortium. The U.S. Implementing Organization (USIO) for IODP is comprised of Texas A&M University, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University, and the Consortium for Ocean Leadership. The JOIDES Resolution is now poised to help IODP continue to push the envelope of science by collecting unique subseafloor samples and data that would otherwise remain out of reach to researchers. For more information, click here.
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