NOAA OER Explorer-in-Training Program (Jan 31.)

2020-01-08T13:41:42+00:00 December 20, 2019|

As part of its mission to train the next generation of ocean explorers, the NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research (OER) hosts undergraduate and graduate students in the Explorer-in-Training program, where participants gain valuable experience in deepwater mapping and exploration. Applications for 2020 are currently being accepted through the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research; click here  to apply. The application deadline is January 31, 2020.

Since 2009, CPAESS/UCAR and OER have hosted over 120 mapping Explorers-in-Training. For many, this first at-sea experience was invaluable in subsequent academic and career pursuits. OER continues to seek opportunities to work with external groups to train the next generation of explorers.

OER also hosts graduate and undergraduate students as Explorers-in-Training in collaboration with NOAA’s Educational Partnership Program and Cooperative Science Centers.

Okeanos Explorer exploration for 2020 will focus on the Atlantic Ocean, including the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone near Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and New England; the Mid-Atlantic Ridge; and Atlantic Maritime Canada. Current undergraduate and graduate students, and recent graduates from higher education institutions in these regions are encouraged to apply. Students traditionally underrepresented in the sciences are also encouraged to apply.

A typical Explorer-in-Training (EiT) placement will consist of one (1) 20- to 30-day expedition either offshore aboard NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer.

EiTs will stand an eight-hour mapping watch for seven days a week throughout their cruise assignment(s). The duties of at-sea mapping watch standers typically include the acquisition and processing of multibeam data and associated sound velocity profile data, as well as precise record keeping. Trainees will also complete a project of their own interest, with approval and support from experienced mapping team personnel. Travel and housing will be provided.

Standard experiences and training during an expedition include:

Acquisition and processing of multibeam data
Use of hydrographic processing and display software
Use of geographic information systems (GIS) software packages
Acquisition and processing of sub-bottom and fisheries sonars
Data management
Familiarity with at-sea routines

U.S. Citizenship, for offshore opportunities
Ability to stand an eight-hour at-sea watch
Familiarity with Windows and Microsoft Office tools
Willingness to learn and follow shipboard Standard Operating Procedures
Interest in learning about seafloor mapping operations
For additional information about the Okeanos Explorer and the NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research, please visit: and

Additional information about the program and how to apply is available through the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research. Applications for 2020 are currently being accepted; click here to apply. The application deadline is January 31, 2020.