When it was suggested to high school teacher Sylvia Wood that her biology class would enjoy experiencing Bamfield Marine Science Centre (BMSC), both Sylvia and her students thought it was an excellent idea.
“The students started to study marine creatures in class and really got on board with going,” says Wood.
BMSC is a shared marine biology campus utilized by several canadian universities. It offers a variety of programs varying in length from three days to two weeks for high school and university students.
Wood is taking seventeen Grade 11/12 biology students for a three-day program. The students have to pay a large portion of the cost. “The main cost is the transportation,” says Wood.
The students have started a gofundme page, though Wood says it is important to understand this is just one small way they are fundraising.
“The gofundme is more for aunts and uncles or other family and friends from far away who wanted to donate,” she explains. “It doesn’t mean the kids aren’t doing other, more traditional fundraising.”
In fact, the students are organizing a clean up of the green belt and have a bottle drive tentatively scheduled. Anyone willing to leave bottle donations outside their doors for pick up are encouraged to do so and can contact Wood at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alternatively, the students have an account at the bottle depot, if anyone dropping off their bottles is so inclined, the account is ‘RSS trip to bamfield – Account #40.’
“The more we fundraise, the more the cost of the trip goes down,” says Wood.
Through their fundraising efforts and a check from Revelstoke Credit Union’s Community Giving Program, the price has already dropped from $1200 to $800 per student, and Woods hopes to get it lower to ensure everyone is able to attend.
“The students aren’t going to be relaxing on the beach; they will be working hard and learning lots. And they are working hard to get themselves there as well,” she says.
Nolan Gale and Cohen Lussier are two Grade 11 students who will be attending.
“My dad is a science teacher at the school and I’ve heard a lot about Bamfield,” says Nolan. “ I thought it would be a cool spot to go.”
“I thought it sounded like a neat experience,” he says. “I also thought maybe would help me decide if I wanted to pursue biology as a career.”