Fourteen Moyers GEAR UP students recently visited the Oklahoma Aquarium in Jenks, Oklahoma. The tour began with a behind the scenes tour led by Oklahoma Aquarium Education Specialist Hallie Moss. Students viewed several areas of the aquarium which included the Shark Adventure exhibit from the top of the tank and the food preparation room. Moss pointed out different highlights of the aquarium during the tour of the larger exhibits, including the Sea Turtle Exhibit where students interacted with Seymour the Sea Turtle and the Polynesian Reef exhibit. The Oklahoma Aquarium is divided into several areas that feature aquatic life from around the world as well as the state of Oklahoma. The most popular parts of the displays are the touch tanks and the feeding tanks, which house fish, sponges, turtles and stingrays. Some of the exhibits visited included Aquatic Oklahoma, where students viewed a prehistoric paddlefish, otter, and a beaver native to Oklahoma. The tour continued with the Extreme Amazon, Marvels and Mysteries, and Shark Adventures, which included a shark tunnel that houses the United States’ most extensive collection of bull sharks.
The field trip was sponsored by Eastern Oklahoma State College GEAR UP. Eastern received a $17 million federal grant in 2017, and will serve more than 3,000 students in 39 area schools for seven years.