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REF NO.: 147

SUBJECT: Marine Institute brings Youth and Oceans Conference to Corner Brook
DATE: March 2, 2010

The Fisheries and Marine Institute (MI) of Memorial University of Newfoundland brings its Youth and Oceans Conference to Corner Brook Regional High School on Thursday, March 4. The media is in invited to attend all activities, which run from 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
The Youth and Oceans Conference celebrates the role of youth in marine environmental activity in Newfoundland and Labrador. Junior high and high school students from throughout Western Newfoundland will take part in a day-long series of thought-provoking presentations and interactive discussions that focus on marine environmental issues representing leadership and career opportunities for youth.
The theme for the conference is Sustainable Oceans: It’s now or never. The event includes several guest speakers, such as Keith Mercer, chair, Advanced Diploma in Integrated Coastal and Ocean Management program, School of Fisheries, Marine Institute.
Other speakers include Ivan Emke, associate professor, Sir Wilfred Grenfell College; and June Hiscock, former director, Ocean Net. 
Justin Dearing, conference co-ordinator, Marine Institute, will provide the welcoming address at 9 a.m. and the closing address at 2:55 p.m. Other activities scheduled at the conference include a youth forum and the MI Marine Survivor Challenge. Two awards will also be presented for Youth Environmental Stewardship and the Visual/Written Art Challenge.
“This Youth and Oceans Conference in Corner Brook will provide junior high and high school students the chance to voice their concerns and learn more about the issues that matter to them,” said Mercer. “They will also learn about the educational options available at MI that will enable them to make a positive impact on the environment.”
 The Marine Institute hosted a Youth and Oceans Conference at its St. John’s campus on Thursday, Feb. 25 and attracted 160 students from the Avalon Peninsula. Among the guest speakers at the event was Sharon Porter-Trask, manager, education and communications, Provincial Department of Environment and Conservation.
Ms. Porter-Trask spoke highly of the Youth and Oceans conferences and the message they send to students.
“Conferences like this one are absolutely essential,” Ms. Porter-Trask said of the Feb. 25 event. “This age group is used to social networking, they’re on Twitter and Facebook. But this is different. A lot of energy is created when you bring them all together. To come here as a like-minded group is an important step.”
Registration for the Youth and Oceans Conference in Corner Brook Regional High School begins at 8 a.m. on Thursday.
The Marine Institute will hold Youth and Oceans Conferences in Labrador and on the Burin Peninsula later in the year.

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