Education & Outreach Specialist

National Marine Sanctuary Foundation

National Marine Sanctuary Foundation

La Plata, MD, USA
Posted on Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Location: Charles County, MD

Supervisor: Research, Resource Protection, and Permit Coordinator

Status: Full-time exempt. No direct reports

What We Need

The National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that is a leading voice for U.S. protected waters, is seeking an Education and Outreach Specialist, a position that will work with Mallows Bay-Potomac River National Marine Sanctuary staff to develop, deliver, and participate in science education and outreach programs, to include having day-to-day interaction with local and state partners, especially Charles County communities and schools.


In 1973, the wreck of USS Monitor, a Civil War ironclad that lay deep beneath the ocean surface where it had sunk over a century before, was discovered off Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. Seeking a way to protect the newly discovered wreck from salvage and other potential impacts, the site was designated on January 30, 1975, as Monitor National Marine Sanctuary (MNMS), our nation’s first national marine sanctuary. The sanctuary consists of a circle of about one nautical mile in area around the site of the wreck. For the last 47 years, through a combination of education, archaeology, marine science, and regulatory programs, sanctuary staff have celebrated Monitor’s history, preserved its legacy, served the community, and honored North Carolina and Virginia’s rich maritime heritage.

On September 3, 2019, NOAA designated Mallows Bay – Potomac River National Marine Sanctuary (MPNMS), which consists of 18 square miles of the tidal Potomac River adjacent to Charles County, Maryland. The sanctuary is jointly managed by the state of Maryland and Charles County for the purposes of protecting the Ghost Fleet and related cultural heritage, and to facilitate recreational access and economic opportunity.

In July 2021, MNMS and MPNMS combined under one management, and staff work across the aisle for both sanctuaries.

To assist in these efforts, the sanctuary is seeking staff support in the area of education and outreach support assistance. This support function requires a specialist in education and outreach programming and will be monitored and managed through frequent verbal, in-person, and email contact with the Research, Resources Protection, and Permit Coordinator.

The National Marine Sanctuary Foundation is committed to a culture of inclusion, equity, and belonging. We are dedicated to attracting and retaining a diverse staff. We honor experiences, perspectives, and unique identities, and welcome the contributions that you can bring to the dedicated team. With a diverse team of employees, we can grow and learn better together and achieve our mission to protect the health of the ocean, coasts and Great Lakes for current and future generations.

What You’ll Do

  • Develop appropriate science education, outreach, marketing, and communication materials, programs, and tools.
  • Collaborate with other staff members in the development and execution of education and outreach events.
  • Assist with evaluating the effectiveness of science education and outreach programs.
  • Assist in developing and sustaining strategic partnerships to enhance the sanctuary’s ability to inspire conservation and increase natural, cultural, and historic resource literacy.
  • Support the diversification of strategic partners to bring relevant sanctuary science, education and outreach activities to diverse communities.
  • Develop and provide new content for science communications that support national and international media outlets, web pages, social media, exhibits, videos, publications, and other outreach products.
  • Develop content and provide technical support to increase access to the sanctuary through virtual programs and ADA-compliant products.
  • Develop, coordinate, and support education and public outreach programs that enhance the inclusion of diverse communities.
  • Secure external resources that support sanctuary science, education, and public engagement.

Who You Are

Required Qualifications:

  • A degree that included or was supplemented by a major study in science education or a combination of education and experience with courses equivalent to a major in education.
  • Excellent writing, communication, interpersonal, and organizational skills to execute all education, outreach, and events responsibilities.
  • Skill in operating personal computers and a working knowledge of various software packages, i.e., word processing, spreadsheets, database, Photoshop, Premier Pro, and internet.
  • Experience with soliciting and managing grants and/or related funding opportunities.
  • Willingness and ability to travel in support of sanctuary activities when needed. (Overnight travel is estimated to be no more than once per month to support activities conducted by the Monitor National Marine Sanctuary office in Newport News, VA).

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Three years of specialized experience in science education with an emphasis on environmental sciences, including:
    1. Developing K-12 science activities, curriculum, or training for educators
    2. Managing educational grants
  • The ability to forge partnerships with diverse communities and organizations.
  • Excellent organizational skills and ability to take responsibility for all meeting logistics and planning support.
  • Knowledge, experience, and participation with the Chesapeake Bay Program, including the Goal Implementation Teams.

Why You Will Love Us

The National Marine Sanctuary Foundation (“Foundation”) is a leading voice for U.S. protected waters, working with communities to conserve and expand those special places for a healthy ocean, coasts, and Great Lakes. The Foundation works in close partnership with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to increase stewardship of our ocean and Great Lakes through on-the- water conservation projects, and education and public outreach activities, and by support for research. Together, we safeguard species and the places they call home, and support coastal communities and economies.

  • Dedicated and passionate staff committed to marine and Great Lakes Conservation
  • Generous leave policy, plus paid time off the week between December 25 and January 1; and 12 paid holidays
  • Health benefits: Medical with an FSA option; dental, and vision
  • Foundation paid Life and Disability Insurance
  • Preparing for the Future: 403(B) with employer contribution after one year of service
  • Commuter Benefits

Compensation and Benefits: $65K—$68K annually, based on experience. The Foundation offers a competitive benefits package.

Apply through the Foundation’s online portal. A cover letter, resume, and at least 3 professional references are required. Applications received by July 14th will be preferred

Preferred start date: September 2024

Location: 200 Baltimore Street, La Plata, MD 20646


The National Marine Sanctuary Foundation is an equal opportunity employer committed to diversity and inclusion in the workplace. We prohibit discrimination and harassment of any kind based on race, color, sex, religion, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, genetic information, pregnancy, or any other protected characteristic as outlined by federal, state, or local laws. This commitment applies to all employment practices within our organization, including hiring, recruiting, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, leave of absence, compensation, benefits, and training. The Foundation makes hiring decisions based solely on qualifications, merit, and business needs at the time.