The Marine Science Education Center offers field trip opportunities that focus on diverse topics within marine science education. We provide outdoor and lab activities that focus on hands-on inquiry-based learning techniques, incorporating local ecosystems in order to foster an appreciation and respect for our local estuarine and marine habitats. We structure our programs to reflect grade-level appropriate content and learning strategies, and state standards. 

Visitors Center-School Group VisitingAll classes are designed to suit appropriate grade levels. Activities may vary depending on grade and total group size. We also offer a station-based field trip option, in which students rotate through alternate stations covering any activities above. This allows larger groups to have access to our programming, and keep multiple groups engaged in activities throughout the field trip.

See below for a list of program options, and for information regarding field trips or to book your next trip please contact the Visiting Class Program at the Marine Science Education Center today.

R/V Katy

Trips aboard the R/V Katy are offered to classes from 5th grade and up. Students will explore the coastal marine environment through sampling marine life at three different levels. Specimens are collected through a plankton tow, a benthic mud grab, and trawl. Students examine, describe and help sort the organisms collected while they learn about adaptations, taxonomy and ecology. Students gain an understanding of the marine environment and its ability to support an abundance of organisms through measurement, observation and sampling. In addition, students have the opportunity to observe other coastal marine life such as dolphins, brown pelicans and sea turtles as the Katy travels the bays and channels where sampling takes place. A half-day trip takes 3 to 3.5 hours with a maximum of 25 people. If your group has more than 25 people, we offer two 1.5-hour trips in order to accommodate up to 50 people.

Grade levels: 5 & up
Pricing (for 1/2 day trip)  Low Season: $450.00         High Season: $650.00

Low Season = August, November-March

High Season = September, October, April, May, June, July

To make a KATY reservation request, please email (do not call)  Sara Pelleteri at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

Liability Statement

Each individual who participates in an on-site educational program must complete a Release and Indemnification Agreement form before they will be allowed to participate in the program.

Individuals who do not fully complete the required form will not be allowed to participate in the scheduled activity.

This includes individuals participating in an on-site dormitory stay, tour, field trip, workshop and/or research vessel cruise. The minor form is to be completed and signed by the parent or legal guardian of any participant who is under eighteen years of age. The adult form is to be completed and signed by each person who is eighteen years of age or older (students, teachers, chaperones, etc.).

It will be the responsibility of each group sponsor to ensure that each participant turns in the fully completed form before visiting UTMSI. The group sponsor upon checking in at UTMSI for their scheduled activity must turn in the completed forms. Please note that each form must be signed and dated by the parent/legal guardian, and/or by the participant who is eighteen years of age or older. Both forms must also be signed and dated by a witness.

Release Forms:

pdfRelease and Indemnification Agreement (Adult Student)

pdfRelease and Indemnification Agreement (Adult Non-Student)

pdfRelease and Indemnification Agreement (Minor)