Junior Ocean Explorers (JOE) is a 1 week, hands-on marine science program for students in grades 4-6 interested in learning more about our environment. Much like our Youth Ocean Explorers Summer Program that is open to students in grades 7-12, JOE involves a combination of short presentations and lectures daily from UVI faculty, staff, and community partners along with field activities utilizing scientific tools to supplement those presentations. Participants report to the UVI Center for Marine & Environmental Studies but can expect to travel with staff to other on-island locations for field work and activities. 
Student mentoringScorpionfish


The Junior Ocean Explorers (JOE) Summer Program aims to provide students with hands-on, STEM-based (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics) training that fosters interest in STEM. Using the ocean as our classroom, students enrolled in JOE develop a sense of environmental stewardship, acquire new skills, and begin viewing science from a new perspective.




  • The Junior Ocean Explorers Summer Program is open to students in grades 4-6 (rising 4th graders are eligible to apply) with an interest in STEM (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics). 
  • Interested applicants should have some experience swimming.
  • The maximum capacity of the Junior Ocean Explorers Summer Program is 20 students.  
  • Currently, the Junior Ocean Explorers Summer Program is only facilitated on St. Thomas.
  • There will be a mandatory orientation meeting for both parents and accepted students prior to the start date of the program (Friday before start date).
  • The Junior Ocean Explorers Summer Program will begin on June 24 - June 28.  
  • Students are expected to be in attendance daily (9AM - 4:30PM) and any scheduled absences should be immediately brought to the attention of camp counselors/coordinators.
  • There is a one-time program fee of $100 which covers all program materials and lunches.
  • Applications are due by the end of business hours (5:00 PM), May 1st, 2019.   



  • Parents or legal guardians of the interested applicant must complete the ONLINE REGISTRATION FORM. This form will provide our team with specific information about the applicant as well as contact information for the parent or legal guardian. 
  • The applicant must complete the STUDENT ASSESSMENT FORM . This form contains short essay questions and  that our team will use to select which students will participate in the program. Failure to complete these forms before the deadline will result in your application being wait listed.
  • Interested mentors should complete the MENTOR APPLICATION FORMMentors should have either participated in the YOE Summer Program previously or be at or above the sophomore level in highschool. 
  • After May 1st, applications will be reviewed. Selected applicants will be notified through E-mail of their acceptance into the program. 
  • Selected applicants will be required to complete additional paperwork such as a PHOTO RELEASE FORM and LIABILITY RELEASE FORM. 
  • Selected applicants will be required to submit payment for the program no later than 1-week prior to the start date of the program; cash, check, or credit card payments are accepted. (Contact howard.forbes@live.uvi.edu for more details). 

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Office Phone: St. Thomas (340) 693-1672
E-mail: St. Thomas (howard.forbes@live.uvi.edu)
Website: http://vimas.uvi.edu
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Virgin Islands Marine Advisory Service
Center for Marine and Environmental Studies
University of the Virgin Islands

St. Thomas
#2 John Brewers Bay
St. Thomas, USVI 00802