TY visit encourages a new generation of Marine Scientists

The Roscommon Convent of Mercy visit the Marine InstituteMarine Institute recently welcomed transition year students from Roscommon Convent of Mercy visit the Marine Institute to its headquarters in Oranmore, Galway. Organised by the Northern and Western Regional Assembly, the students toured the facilities and learnt about career opportunities in the marine sector.

The aim of the visit to the Marine Institute's facilities was to encourage the female students to explore subjects in science, technology, engineering and maths and potential careers in STEM. A number of female scientists and staff from the Marine Institute spoke to the 30 transition year students about working in fisheries science, marine chemistry, data and applications management.

Dr Peter Heffernan, CEO of the Marine Institute said, "Almost 70% of the women working at the Marine Institute work in science and research including oceanography, fisheries ecosystems and advisory roles, marine environment and food safety.

"We aim to inspire a new generation of marine professionals and encourage awareness of the diverse careers in the marine that can be unlocked by studying subjects in science, technology and engineering. Highly qualified and skilled professionals are needed across a wide range of marine areas, to harness our ocean wealth and sustainably grow Ireland's ocean economy," Dr Peter Heffernan said.

Scientists and staff from the Marine Institute welcomed the opportunity to share their passion and insights, and experience working in the marine sector. Scientist also shared information on the Ireland-Wales EU Interreg Project, BlueFish, which aims to develop our knowledge and understanding of marine resources and the potential impacts of climate change in the Irish and Celtic Sea ecosystem. The students also spoke with scientists about recent seabed mapping surveys and the discovery of a very rare shark nursery in Ireland's deep ocean territory (SeaRover project).

The need for education and training programmes to maintain and develop skilled professionals in the marine sector is highlighted in Ireland's national marine plan, Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth. Encouraging a new generation to pursue marine and maritime careers, is an initiative of the Marine Institute's Strategic Plan 2018-2022: Building Ocean Knowledge, Delivering Ocean Services. The Marine Institute runs a week-long, full-time work experience programme for TY students each year.

Transition year students from any school in Ireland are welcome to apply for this opportunity at the Marine Institute for 2020. Further details on the application process will be available later this year.