A floating school to make young people aware of the sea problem

Leaving the island of Réunion on June 27, seventy-five students from scientific, artistic and maritime professions share an extraordinary scientific and cultural adventure. Aboard the Marion Dufresne II, a vessel operating within the French Southern and Antarctic Lands (TAAF), these young people experience the first edition of the Blue Outremer School. This system was developed by the Overseas Ministry, Ifremer and about thirty other partners, and presented at a special press conference on June 23. During this ten-day crossing, students are invited to participate in scientific missions, conferences and courses to understand the richness of the Indian Ocean. “A lookout and a weapon against global warming,” said Sophie Brocas, Director General of Overseas Territories, who wants to make young people aware of the cause of the oceans.

A unique scientific and educational experience

During this journey, students can discover the sources of theIndian Ocean† Exploration of the seamounts of La Pérouse and La Feuillée, near Réunion, stopovers at the Glorious Islands, excursion to a geyser and stopover on the island of Mayotte: the itinerary is full. Students are required to sample rocks and surface water to capture plastic particles, take classes in marine ecology and attend conferences to explore the effects of global warming on the environment. ocean biodiversity† The students will also participate in the science mission to study Mayobs 2, an underwater volcano that recently appeared off the coast of Mayotte. Experience is not alone scientific† Art students are thus invited to participate in the same activities as future scientists. One way to “take advantage of this knowledge to create an upcoming exhibition on the subject,” notes Coline, an art student who is part of the journey.

A human adventure

An opportunity to build a different kind of education for Emmanuel Corse. The professor of the Mayotte University Training and Research Center sees this trip as a kind of “pedagogy outside the walls of the university”. The mix of students from different islands in the region is a boon to Mouyna Inzoudi, a biology student from Mayotte and Magali Rocamora, political science students from Seychelles, who hope to learn more about their region and the people who live there. An opportunity also for Merlène Saunier, doctoral student, “attracted by the human side of the experience”. If the participants work together to understand the consequences of the climate change on the oceans, it is also an opportunity for them to discuss their different cultures and education.

Awareness of the richness of the oceans

The Overseas Territories represent 97% of the French maritime area and have nearly 18,000 marine species. “An incomparable wealth” that the organizers want to share with the students. “The young people of this region consider their oceansthat’s why we set up this mission,” confides Sophie Brocas during the press conference. The aim of this floating school is not only to teach students certain scientific methods, but also to “change their relationship to the sea,” says Emmanuel Corse. experience published by the crew adventure log and published day after day on the Ifremer site.Sophie Brocas also counts on the students themselves who, through their social networks, “establish a link between them and those who stayed on the ground to share their knowledge.

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