Nippon Foundation/GEBCO scholar joins NOAA Ship Thomas Jefferson

An image of Thomas Jefferson's survey launch 2903.

By Rebecca Formanek

Staring off into the seemingly infinite blue horizon something inside me asks, what secrets lie beneath the last frontier of this planet? Three weeks aboard NOAA Ship Thomas Jefferson showed me I am not the only one to think this. The talented individuals that comprise the crew of Thomas Jefferson demonstrated the range and dedication to discovering these secrets, and I thank them for sharing their time, knowledge, and experiences. If there is anything that can unite a diverse group of people, it is the sea.

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NOAA helps develop undergraduate course in lakebed mapping

Grand Traverse Light aerial of Northport Michigan.

As the New Blue Economy grows along with demands for a climate-ready workforce, NOAA is connecting the dots between climate resilience and the need for a workforce skilled in science and technology supporting ocean and coastal mapping. Exposure to key disciplines, from geodesy, oceanography, and science data management to modeling, hydrography and GIS-based cartography, is critical to building robust interest, opportunities and expertise in the government and industry geospatial careers supporting climate resilience. NOAA works with a variety of partners to advance workforce development in these foundational geospatial areas. In particular, hydrography – measuring water depths, locating hazards, and describing the seafloor – is a challenging but exciting field dependent on skilled technicians, surveyors, and scientists to acquire mapping data using state-of-the-art technologies. With only 50% of U.S. coastal, ocean and Great Lakes waters mapped, there is a lot of work to do! Read on to learn about a hydrographic surveying project NOAA is supporting with Northwestern Michigan College in the Great Lakes.

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