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Huntsman Education

“I think the greatest contribution the Huntsman will make to Canada will come from its education programs, in particular the ones for school children,” written in 1999 by Dr. John Anderson, a principle architect of the Huntsman. We continue to view this sentiment as a primary calling for the Huntsman after delivering inspiring hands-on educational experiences that go beyond the classroom to more than 75,000 students of all ages since our inception in 1969!

Huntsman was initially created to be a “co-operative venture in learning” where government and university researchers could come together as equals to collaborate on marine science. Our facilities were used extensively in the 1970’s and 1980’s by professors and graduate students to complete research. In addition, undergraduates were attending member university field courses. It also wasn’t lost on early Huntsman staff that our social impact could be magnified by including aspects of marine biology to inspire our local residents and tourists. Nobody in New Brunswick is ever more than 200 km from the ocean. Its health affects every visitor and resident in the province and our future may very well be determined by how well we connect to the ocean’s resources! For this reason, Huntsman education programs strive to foster “active stewardship” of our oceans and educate students about their critical role in this global movement. What started as a field station for member universities grew to also include a public aquarium/museum and a robust public education program.

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All Huntsman education programs give students the essential “hands-on” experience they need to understand the delicate balance of the marine environment, preparing them to leave with a new appreciation of the oceans and their future. Time-tested and proven approaches, augmented with research facilities and expert guidance from experienced Huntsman staff, provide participants with a high quality memorable education experience.

Today, Huntsman education is provided through a consolidated Education & Outreach department and offers an extensive series of programming with a primary focus on marine biology and ocean stewardship – summer day camps, homeschool programs and formal classroom curricula, tourism focused edutainment, professional workshops, overnight high school field courses, and University academic credits that provide field course exposure from a couple of days to three month semesters.

Our education facilities are extensive and include dedicated instructional labs/wetlabs, several classroom options (including the 218-seat Dunn Science Theatre), Fundy Discovery Aquarium, and our vessel – R/V Fundy Spray – to provide ample opportunity for inspirational and immersive marine education. These facilities are supported by our hospitality capacity to provide wholesome meals and comfortable accommodations while away from home.

We welcome you to explore our website to learn who we are, what we stand for, and see our mission in action to ensure a sustainable future for our coastal communities and ocean resources. And, of course, book now to participate in our programs or reach out to discuss your aquatic education interests. We are certain that we are able to develop a program that will inspire your students!

If you, too, are inspired to support student education at Huntsman then please donate or choose other ways to support the Huntsman mission today!

Education Timeline

1989

  • Connors Bros. agrees to provide all feed required to maintain our aquarium seals at no cost. This important contribution and relationship continues through today.

  • New seawater supply system commissioned to provide our research and Fundy Discovery Aquarium operations with up to 3,000 US Gallons Per Minute of natural seawater.

2017

  • A consortium of 20 universities and several government departments came together to form the Huntsman Marine Laboratory (name changed to The Huntsman Marine Science Centre in 1987) as a completely separate, federally incorporated, non-profit, registered charitable organization to become a “co-operative venture in learning.” Decades later we now refer to this as a social enterprise.

1969

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1986

  • Huntsman acquired the R/V W.B. Scott to support university research and remained in service until replaced in 2008.

2005

  • Significant renovations and upgrades completed at Anderson House.
     

  • Inaugural offering of the University of New Brunswick Saint John Campus (UNBSJ) Fall Semester Program.

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  • Record visitation to our new Fundy Discovery Aquarium set at 36,058.
     

  • Rope recycling pilot initiated with collection bins placed at four harbours in southwest NB as part of the #DebrisFreeFundy initiative. This program has steadily increased in effort since then.

2018

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1970

  • Purchased the historical Sir Thomas Tait Estate – 50 acres of land with Anderson House that today comprises our Upper Campus – with the assistance of the Government of New Brunswick to provide accommodation for visiting students. This facility was officially opened during our first Annual General Meeting with Dr. Huntsman cutting the ribbon!
     

  • University of Guelph purchased our first research vessel – the Lana Roxanne – which stayed in service until replaced in 1972.
     

  • First graduate student to complete research at the Huntsman is Dr. Peter G. Wells while enrolled at the University of Guelph under the supervision of Dr. John Sprague focused on hydrocarbon toxicology with lobster (Homarus americanus) larvae and post larvae

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1976

  • Huntsman offers first Aquaculture Technician Program, jointly with the New Brunswick Community College, that extends for more than a decade to meet the needs of the new Atlantic salmon fish farming sector.

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1991