Community Engagement and Education

Inspiring Young Minds through Science 

At the National Marine Mammal Foundation, we’re more than just an organization dedicated to marine mammal research and conservation; we’re a community-driven movement empowering individuals to make a difference in the world of science and environmental conservation. Our Community Engagement Program is at the heart of our mission, designed to inspire and nurture the curiosity of the next generation of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) professionals.

Inspire the Scientist Within You

We believe in the power of curiosity, and we’re here to ignite the spark of scientific inquiry. Our Community Engagement programs offer unique opportunities for exploration, discovery, and hands-on learning in marine science and conservation.

Our interactive workshops ignite the inherent interest that learners of all ages have in marine mammals, the ocean, and environmental conservation. Focusing on marine mammal science, veterinary care, conservation, and STEAM careers, our workshops inspire environmental stewardship and foster a sense of belonging in the scientific community. Visit our Workshops page to learn more about our youth workshops, family events, and the Scientific Snapshots virtual series.

Explore our in-person and virtual events designed to immerse you in the world of marine science and conservation. From interactive workshops to captivating lectures, there’s something for everyone. Sign up now and join us in discovering the wonders of the ocean.

The NMMF’s Youth Initiatives empower middle and high school students in marine science, conservation, and STEAM, fostering future environmental leaders and ocean ambassadors through education, mentorship, and hands-on experiences.

Marine Mammal Internships

Explore marine mammal care and research through internship programs offered by the NMMF and our collaborators. Internships are tailored for college and post-graduate students. Gain hands-on experience, contribute to vital conservation efforts and deepen your understanding of marine science while making a tangible impact on marine mammal welfare.

Have fun with engaging and educational STEAM activities specially designed for toddlers to elementary school-aged children who are interested in the ocean and marine life. Young learners are introduced to the fascinating world beneath the waves through a blend of interactive activities and resources that make learning both fun and informative.

Embark on an enlightening journey with the “Dr. Sam Ridgway Storyfile Experience,” Explore the profound contributions of Dr. Sam Ridgway, an icon in marine mammal science and founding President of the NMMF. Discover his pioneering research and its impact on marine mammals. This experience celebrates his legacy and provides a valuable educational resource, unveiling the depths of marine mammal science and a visionary’s legacy.

At the NMMF,  we have a passion for marine mammals and the incredible world of science. Join us in our mission to inspire, educate, and empower the next generation of STEAM professionals. Together, we can protect our oceans and the amazing creatures that call them home.

Ready to embark on your journey into the world of marine mammal science? Reach out to our Community Engagement team today!

Support our Cause, Empower Future STEAM Leaders

You can support the NMMF’s STEAM education program by making a donation today. Your contribution directly aids in the development and expansion of engaging educational initiatives, providing young minds with unparalleled access to marine mammal science and conservation. Every donation fosters a deeper understanding of marine ecosystems, inspires future STEAM professionals, and supports critical research, ensuring a brighter and more sustainable future for our oceans and its inhabitants.

Our Supporters and Collaborators

At the NMMF, we are deeply grateful for the incredible support of our partners and collaborators. These organizations and businesses play a crucial role in our programming, whether it’s through funding support, student engagement, or providing resources. Together, we work tirelessly to inspire, educate, and empower the next generation of STEAM professionals and environmental stewards.

We extend our sincere thanks to each of our partners and collaborators for their unwavering commitment to our mission. If you are interested in becoming a partner and joining us in our efforts to make a difference, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Together, we can create even more impactful initiatives and foster a brighter future for our oceans and marine mammal populations.

Funding Sponsors

Partners and Collaborators

Community Education Goals

At the NMMF, we’re fueling curiosity and inspiring the next generation of STEAM professionals. We’re committed to enhancing life for marine mammals, humans, and our shared oceans through science, service, and education. Our focus? To instill a deep appreciation for marine mammals and science in our community and inspire conservation action by the next generation of capable, critical thinkers. We’re committed to empowering youth in STEAM, nurturing community connections, and fostering our team’s growth. As an interpretive platform for NMMF research, we bridge science and community, creating a global impact. 

The Roots of our Education Program

The NMMF’s education program is rooted in the vision of Dr. Jim Rohr, a dedicated advocate for STEAM education who played a pivotal role at the NMMF by inspiring and leading educational outreach initiatives. He was deeply passionate about nurturing young students’ interest in STEAM, thus creating a profound and enduring legacy of inspiration and innovation. At the core of our current educational outreach effort lies Jim’s program, affectionately known as the “Rohrfish Outreach Initiative.”

Jim Rohr’s unwavering commitment to STEAM education remains the driving force behind our mission as we proudly uphold his groundbreaking work, establishing robust community partnerships to ensure the broadest possible reach to students. Through captivating outreach events, we actively engage and ignite students’ passion for STEAM, equipping them with the knowledge and enthusiasm to become the future’s STEAM leaders, advocates for marine mammal conservation, and dedicated ocean ambassadors. Dr. Rohr’s legacy is brilliantly reflected in our collaborations with organizations such as UCSD Create, the Girl Scouts of San Diego, and the Fleet Science Center, all passionately committed to bringing the marvels of science closer to students and educators throughout San Diego.

Today, we not only preserve Dr. Rohr’s vision and legacy but also extend our educational program to more cities and youth groups across the country, inspiring and enlightening hundreds of young minds each year.

Community Engagement Team

Erika Putman

Director of Internship Programs / Supervisor of Animal Care

Celeste Parry

Director of Community Engagement
Clinical Research Coordinator

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