Looking out from the mainland across Penobscot Bay, just to the south of Vinalhaven is Hurricane Island.  The island was once famous for its granite quarrying and had a thriving community which disappeared overnight when the granite industry collapsed. Later it was the home to the Hurricane Island Outward Bound School where we could hear the shrieks of their students as the jumped into the cold water for their morning swims. It’s now home to the Hurricane Island Foundation, its Center for Science and Leadership, and its Research Station.

On Wednesday, May 4, 2016 at 8:00 a.m., our special guests were Barney Hallowell, Executive Director of Hurricane Island and Phoebe Jekielek, the Director of Marketing and Outreach.  Barney and Phoebe talked about the island, the foundation, and its projects.  You’ll find out about all the interesting things happening on our neighbor across the bay.

The Hurricane Island programs reach public and private middle and high school students, college and university students, graduate researchers, undergraduate interns, amateur naturalists, scientists, sustainable engineers, and volunteers who are committed to our mission and excited about the opportunities on Hurricane!

The Center for Science and Leadership (HICSL) is a scientific and education community on Hurricane Island that provides experiential, hands-on education programs and research opportunities focusing on marine sciences, STEAM education, human ecology, sustainable living technology, citizen science initiatives, and leadership in environmental stewardship for all ages from middle school to adults. Their goal is to excite people about doing science and about being leaders in the next wave of scientific discovery and environmental conservation. During much of the year, these programs take place on Hurricane Island–one of the most unique and beautiful settings on the Atlantic coast. In the off-season, our staff works with teachers and students to support, enhance, and develop experiential, project-based science and leadership education within the classroom.

The Hurricane Island Field Research Station is a small facility on Hurricane Island with a pier and docks on Hurricane Sound. When funded and completed, the research station will have water tables, work spaces, a small laboratory, and a classroom/meeting room. A SCUBA diving center and research vessel will be available for offshore and underwater research. The research station will provide opportunities for undergraduate and graduate scientists and interns, as well as fishermen, to work with career professionals doing field research in lobster biology, climate change, and ocean monitoring. Students in HICSL programs will have the opportunity to work with research station scientists and learn about authentic, hands-on field science. Hurricane Island is ideally and uniquely located for a wide range of science education and research projects that cross several disciplines and are relevant to the ecological sustainability of Penobscot Bay and the Gulf of Maine.

Hurricane Island Aerial

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