New Traverse City Ship Turns Students Into Scientists - Northern Michigan's News Leader

New Traverse City Ship Turns Students Into Scientists

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A Wisconsin family donated a large boat to the Inland Seas Education Association in Suttons Bay.

They're using it to give students more options for their future.

Executive Director of Inland Seas Education Association, Fred Sitkins is proud of their new boat Utopia, that’s turning kids into scientists, “They become real research scientists for the few days on the Great Lakes. We allow kids to use all the latest equipment that scientists are using to research the lakes and they have a new appreciation of what a career like that might look like.”

Utopia was made in 1946 with the intent to sail the world.

Today it’s beds and tables will host fleets of students sailing Michigan’s Great Lakes.

“It's a really neat just environment down below and we're really excited to get kids down there to experience that” says Fred.

While on the lakes, students will become members of the crew.

Certain programs even giving kids the opportunity to live on the boat.

Fred tells us the program does, “multi-day programming with youth those are some of our most impactful programs that we do 3 and 4 day trips where kids get on board they're fully functioning members of the crew.”

The ship will offer a variety of hands-on learning experiences and will be docking at Traverse City's soon-to-be Discovery Pier so Fred says people of all age groups can learn from the ship first hand, “So Utopia is going to be docked at the newly formed Discovery Pier in Traverse City and this is a publicly accessible tall ship harbor so the ability to add a new tall ship to the harbor in Traverse City is really exciting for us.”

These programs start in Spring but students and adults can sign up in advance here.