The International SeaKeepers Society hosted an outreach program with Youth Making Ripples Film Festival award-winner onboard DISCOVERY Yacht Defiance.


Miami, Florida- April 23rd, 2015- The International SeaKeepers Society and Global Oceans hosted Youth Making Ripples, an extension of the nonprofit organization Beneath The Waves, students for an outreach program aboard the DISCOVERY Yacht Defiance, a 72-foot Mangusta motor yacht. The day trip welcomed Youth Making Ripples Film Festival award recipients to learn more about the local marine ecosystems and Miami’s coral reef system. The multi-pronged expedition included Dr. Lauren Toth, a researcher at the United States Geological
Survey located in St. Petersburg, Florida, Dr. Brooke Gintert, a coral reef scientist from the University of Miami, Tom Fitz, a freelance underwater photographer and videographer, Carl Kesser, a professional cinematogrpher, and Jason Kesser, from Shake 108, a local nonprofit radio station.

Youth Making Ripples Film Festival award-winner, Sara Beeler, and four other students from Coral Shores High School in Tavernier, explored several aspects of reef research. First, the students learned about the geologic history of coral reefs by analyzing coral core samples. Dr. Gintert then shared her work from the Underwater Landscape Mosaics for Coral Reef Mapping and Monitoring Program at the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences and explained how she uses photography to map coral reefs through mosaics. These mosaics provide a means of monitoring coral reefs over time. Freelance underwater photographer, Tom Fitz, also joined in and advised the students on creating underwater footage and demonstrated the use of his professional underwater camera equipment

After the students were well educated on the group’s reef research, everyone took to the water to snorkel Rainbow and Emerald Reefs offshore of Key Biscayne and experience coral reefs firsthand.

This outreach event was the third of its kind for Global Ocean’s, Defiance. In 2014 Defiance traveled to Newport, Rhode Island to educate the Boys & Girls Clubs of Newport County about marine pollution, and prior to that, to Bimini to deploy drifters and discuss ocean currents with a group of Bahamian school children.

Beneath the Waves- Youth Making Ripples is a nonprofit film competition devoted to engaging students in marine awareness and conservation through the power of film. Elementary, middle, and high school-aged students are encouraged to create and submit a short film on the marine-related topic or issue of their choice. For more information on Youth Making Ripples, please visit:

About The International SeaKeepers Society® The International SeaKeepers Society is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization focusing on the health of the world’s oceans and climate. SeaKeepers works with the boating and yachting community to take advantage of their unique potential in order to further marine research and to raise awareness about the issues our oceans face. The International SeaKeepers Society acts as a global catalyst working with governments, scientists, industry, and other marine organizations to further its mission and to support sensible, achievable marine protection and restoration. For more information visit

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