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SPC Seminole Campus Environmental Science Club Goes to the Clearwater Aquarium!


SPC Seminole Campus Environmental Science Club end of semester bash! The Environmental Science Club has done great things in the community this semester including cleanup projects. The end of the semester a party to get together and celebrate all of the hard work and success the Environmental Science Club has had this year. Bellow is a photo of Professor Julie Vogel and Professor Kelli Stickrath, the clubs Faculty Adviser who is moving to the Tarpon Campus in the coming Fall semester.

Professor Julie Vogel and Professor Kelli Stickrath

The Environmental Science Club celebrated the end of the semester by visiting the Clearwater Aquarium, which was approved by Seminole Campus’ SGA (Seminole Student Government Association) Student Actives fees, followed by lunch at the Palms Pavilion.

The Clearwater Aquarium is located at 249 Windward Passage Clearwater, FL. 33767, phone number: (727) 441-1790.

The Palms Pavilion is just around the roundabout on Clearwater Beach, located at 10 Bay Esplanade Clearwater, FL. 33767, phone number: (727) 446-2642.

Before exploring the aquarium, the Environmental Science Club went out into the bay in Clearwater on a boat for a guided snorkeling experience, our guide was Captain Joe Malo.  Captain Malo explained how people are affecting the wild life in the area and pointed out different birds and sea life during the trip. Shown below is an Osprey nest, unfortunately the baby birds are difficult to see; Captain Malo said he could see the baby birds being fed the day prior to our visit, as the group passed the nest.

Osprey bird in its nest

While snorkeling, some of the veteran members picked up crabs and different clams to show to the rest of the group and explained what they were to the group and how they live. “It was fun doing something new, and learning more about animals and plant life in our area”, is how Heather Anderson (WoW, SGA, and new club member) described her first snorkeling experience with the Environmental Science Club. Below is a photo of the group on the boat heading out to the sandbar where they saw sea life, like sea urchins and horse conchs.

Members of the Seminole Campus Environmental Science Club on the boat

After the snorkeling experience, the club went in the Clearwater Aquarium and walked around for a while learning about things the aquarium does for the animals there without a guide. Below Chuck White, SGA Representative for the club, is offering to walk some members through the Aquarium and explain a few things, having been one of the people helping at the Aquarium on and off.

Kenzie Post, Chuck White, Mary Freeman and Alexandra Freeman

The Clearwater Aquarium is the home of many marine animals that have been injured, or have been found and are being nursed back to health to be released if possible. Their most famous resident is Winter the dolphin, who is missing part of her fin after being entangled in a crab trap. Winter is the star in the movie based on her life, Dolphin Tale, produced by Warner Brothers, filmed at the aquarium and in other areas of St. Petersburg.

Winter is on the left in this photo
Winter is on the left in this photo   


Marine Life Within the Aquarium

The aquarium has a medical center with state of the art equipment in place to help injured animals and treat them for diseases.  The sea turtle shown below is having tumors removed with lasers by a surgeon. This procedure can be viewed by the public when visiting the aquarium while employee’s answer questions from viewers.

Sea turtle having surgery

After enjoying snorkeling and exploring the aquarium, the Seminole Environmental Science Club went to lunch at the beautiful Palms Pavilion Beachside Bar and Grill on Clearwater Beach. The table was completely full of smiling faces having lunch on the beach-side; although some tears did arise as Kat Riley, President of the club, said good bye to Professor Kelli Stickrath. Professor Stickrath is moving to the Tarpon Campus in the Fall semester and has been with the club for a while as the Facility Advisory; she will be missed by all that have met her at the Seminole Campus.

Environmental Science Club having lunch at the Palms Pavilion Beachside Grill

New club members anxiously await the events coming in the Fall, after experiencing the fun filled learning experience rewarded to the club. Joining a club on campus is a great way to get involved in school, build great connections, and improve a portfolio for a university, scholarship, or resume.

For information on joining The Seminole Campus Environmental Science Club please visit or on like the club on , SPC Seminole Environmental Science Club.

Written and Photo’s by Lisa Manners, Seminole SGA and Seminole Environmental Science Club member, Editor for Arts section for Sandbox News 

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