Education and Outreach

Education and outreach are central to the mission of the Cooperative Institute for Modeling the Earth System. Much of CIMES research is conducted by graduate students and postdoctoral researchers, who receive outstanding training in earth system sciences through the Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences (AOS) Program in cooperation with NOAA-GFDL. Other education and outreach activities described below have the goals of disseminating earth system research to a broader audience, increasing scientific literacy related to climate, and broadening participation in climate science.

Cooperative Institute Research Internships

Several 8-10 week summer research internships are awarded annually, based on an open competitive application, to undergraduate or graduate students interested in gaining research experience at GFDL, working with a GFDL mentor.The goal of this program is to broaden participation in climate and earth system science studies and introduce students from diverse backgrounds to research in climate and earth-system science.

Cooperative Institute Visiting Faculty Exchange Fellowships

To encourage connections between GFDL and a wide range of academic institutions, particularly those serving communities that have historically been underrepresented in climate science, several faculty exchange fellowships are awarded annually, following an open competitive application process. Current faculty at US academic institutions, particularly minority serving institutions, are eligible for travel grants to cover visits of one week to three months at GFDL.

Summer Institute on Weather and Climate

This week-long summer institute for teachers of grades 3-8, officially titled “Questioning Underlies Effective Science Teaching” (QUEST), is hosted biannually by the Princeton University Program in Teacher Preparation. QUEST is designed to enhance teachers’ knowledge of Climate and the Ocean, through laboratory experiments and experiences aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) of the New Jersey state education curriculum. QUEST provides a forum for communicating topical climate science to New Jersey K-12 educators, thereby increasing environmental literacy.

K-12 outreach events

CIMES researchers participate in several outreach events, including the New Jersey Ocean Fun Days, organized by the New Jersey Sea grant at the Jersey shore, and the Young Women’s Science Conference, organized by Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory. Table-top experiments, demonstrated by Princeton researchers and students, illustrate topics in ocean and climate science, such as iceberg melting, ocean acidification, and oceanic density currents.