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AKTEACH: KIBSD’s link to the Kodiak Area Marine Science Symposium

AKTEACH: KIBSD’s link to the Kodiak Area Marine Science Symposium
By Noelle H. Lowery

This week, scientists and those interested in scientific work being done on and in the waters around Kodiak Island will gather at the Kodiak Area Marine Science Symposium, or KAMSS.

Students throughout the Kodiak Island Borough School District will have a front row seat thanks to AKTEACH, which will be linking all district schools and the community at large to the symposium this Wednesday and Thursday, April 19-20. KIBSD classrooms and community members can watch via live streaming at District schools also can participate in the various symposium sessions and question and answer opportunities via the district’s video teleconferencing system.

“The event is designed to gather scientists who've been working around Kodiak so they can share what they've been doing with the community,” explains Teresa Hedges, AKTEACH Statewide Virtual Content and STEM Program Coordinator. “(AKTEACH’s) role is to share it with schools and community, and facilitate interaction between the schools and scientists. I'm connecting the schools via BlueJeans so they'll have an opportunity to ask questions.”

Hedges has been involved in KAMSS since its inception, first as a teacher bringing her class to hear presenters and than as a facilitator and presenter when her class presented its video on marine debris on Kodiak.

Sponsored by the Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory Program and the University of Alaska Fairbanks, KAMSS provides a forum for researchers to share findings within the research community and to the public. Julie Matweyou of the University of Alaska Fairbanks and Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory Program is the symposium chairperson.

Additionally, the symposium offers an opportunity for stakeholders to engage and understand how Kodiak’s marine environment and resources function, change and affect the lives and livelihoods of Kodiak’s residents. In addition, it offers opportunities for researchers to form a plan for integrated, cooperative and community-inspired marine research.

This will be the third regional marine science symposium, and it will run April 18-21 at the Kodiak Harbor Convention Center. It is free and open to the public, but pre-registration is recommended to allow for organizers to better accommodate all of the participants.

In addition to the customary oral and poster presentations, topical areas will be organized thematically with a cross-disciplinary approach to best encourage dialogue among disciplines. Each session also will be followed by a facilitated discussion to collectively engage participants.

Members of the 2017 KAMSS steering committee include:
  • Julie Bonney of the Alaska Groundfish Data Bank, Kodiak
  • Robin Corcoran of the US Fish and Wildlife Service, Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge, Kodiak
  • Switgard Suesterloh of the Alaska Ecological Resource Services, Kodiak
  • Robert Foy of NOAA Fisheries, Alaska Fisheries Science Center, Kodiak
  • Pat Jacobson, Kodiak resident and former member University of Alaska Board of Regents
  • Tom Lance of the Sun’aq Tribe of Kodiak
  • Theresa Peterson of the Alaska Marine Conservation Council, North Pacific Fishery Management Council, Kodiak
  • Danielle Ringer of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Kodiak
  • Nick Sagalkin of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, Kodiak
  • Patrick Saltonstall of the Alutiiq Museum, Kodiak
  • Kate Wynne of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory Program, emeritus
For more information, please visit, and if you cannot make it to the symposium on Wednesday or Thursday, you can watch the events live by clicking