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OR&R Scientists Share Knowledge with Students of All Ages

MAY 4, 2020 — To provide a glimpse into what NOAA scientists do in the Office of Response and Restoration, two OR&R scientists—marine biologist Gary Shigenaka and chemist Charlie Henry—recently led a NOAA Live! Webinar for students, The Job of a NOAA Oil Spill Response Scientist.

Picture of a man in a helocopter next to picture of a panel of three people.
Gary Shigenaka (left image) and Charlie Henry (pictured on the right, in the right image) working at the time of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Image credits: NOAA.

Gary and Charlie explained how their work aims to provide emergency responders with the best available science to guide their decisions in dealing with oil spilled into oceans and waterways.

They shared how their respective careers began, and their involvement in significant spills, such as the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the 1989 Exxon Valdez spill in Prince William Sound, Alaska, and a 2014 spill in a very sensitive UNESCO World Heritage site in Bangladesh. Gary also provided a virtual “hands on” experiment to show how oil affects birds’ feathers. Their presentation was well received, with lots of interaction by the participants.

The NOAA Live! webinar series is offered by NOAA's Regional Collaboration Network in conjunction with Woods Hole Sea Grant and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. The webinars are designed to help students who are self-studying during school closures to learn more about NOAA and its staff in the broad array of sciences.

Each webinar features a different NOAA expert/topic and a moderated question and answer session throughout. The webinars are geared toward grades 2-8 and allow student participants to connect with the scientists. The free webinars are hosted on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 11 EDT. The organizers ask you to register for each webinar, and they provide additional resources to access at home, either before or after the presentation. The series started on March 16 and will run through June 12, 2020.

If you missed the webinar with Gary and Charlie, a recorded version is available.

In addition, you can watch another OR&R scientist’s presentation, Talking Trash with Peter Murphy, the NOAA Marine Debris Program’s Alaska Regional Coordinator.

For more information, contact Donna Roberts,

Return to OR&R Weekly.

Last updated Friday, May 8, 2020 4:50pm PDT