Seacoast Science Center
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About Us

Thank you for your interest in learning about the Seacoast Science Center, a non-profit marine science education organization located on the New Hampshire coast. Through programs, exhibits, and marine mammal rescue, we inform people, from toddlers to grandparents, about why a healthy ocean is important.

Our Mission

Ocean education is what we do. We educate to motivate. We want everyone to recognize and understand that what we do every day has an impact on the health of the ocean and that ocean health impacts our daily lives. A healthy ocean drives our quality of life today and will for future generations.

Annual Operations At-a-Glance

Visitation: 77,500 people
Programs: 8,025 programs for visitors; 20,582 for students
Staff: 20 year-round; 75 peak season
Volunteers: 200 year round; 200 special events

2015 Budget

Income and Expense Charts FY14

Organizational History and Milestones

When we opened in 1992, the Center was a public/private partnership between the state, two non-profits and the University of New Hampshire (UNH). By 2001, we had outgrown that structure and became an independent non-profit organization. We maintain our tradition of partnership with a strong connection to UNH and by collaborating with a wide network of institutions. In 2004 and 2007 we completed two National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) funded capital projects. The 2004 project included interior renovations and upgraded exhibit life support systems. The Gregg Interactive Learning Studio opened in 2007 with technology that connects on-site students and visitors to multimedia educational experiences. The Studio's distance learning programs reach across the country and as far afield as Australia.

In 2010, we were named a NBC's TODAY Show's Lend-a-Hand TODAY recipient. Lend-a-Hand TODAY recognizes smaller non-profits that make big impacts in their communities. The Seacoast Science Center was the only environmental education institution among the six chosen that year.

We began integrating whale ecology into our exhibits in 2007 when we acquired the skeleton of Tofu, a young humpback whale. In 2012, the exhibit was expanded and now includes the widest collection of marine mammal skeletons on public display in northern New England.

In 2014 we completed Families by the Seaside, a marine science education project that asked underserved families to create their own marine science learning experiences. With seven teams of science centers and community based organizations across New England, this $500,000 NOAA-funded initiative has resulted in ground-breaking insights about what families from diverse backgrounds know and want to learn about the sea, how learning together outdoors strengthens families. The project's resulting Partnership Guide will advance the art and science of collaborating.

The Center was granted authorization by the National Marine Fisheries Service to lead New Hampshire's marine mammal rescue effort, effective January 1, 2014. The Center's Marine Mammal Rescue Team responds to stranded, injured and diseased seals, whales, porpoises, and dolphins in NH's coastal region. The team also educates beach goers and coastal communities about what to do when they spot a seal or other marine mammal on the shore.

How You Can Help

Invest in us by becoming a member or sponsor, or by joining an annual giving society. Together we will build a community of ocean stewards who care about, and for, the future of the sea.

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