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Coast Day essay contest
The essay contest is now open. Winners will be recognized at Coast Day, to be held Sunday, Oct. 1, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on UD’s Hugh R. Sharp Campus in Lewes.

Coast Day essay contest

Photo by Evan Krape

Coast Day essay contest asks 5th graders to plan a robotics mission on land, in the air, or at sea

Fifth graders are invited to participate in the annual Coast Day essay contest by answering the writing prompt: “How would you plan a robotics mission to discover new things about Delaware’s land, water, and air?”

Students are surrounded by opportunities for learning and discovery about Delaware’s terrestrial, freshwater and marine environments — in the classroom, in the library, online, through University of Delaware resources and every time they go outside.

In keeping with this year’s Coast Day theme, “Discoveries on land, in the air and at sea,” students are encouraged to consider the technology that UD scientists use to make discoveries, and how they would use robotics to explore Delaware.

Contest winners will be recognized at Coast Day, to be held Sunday, Oct. 1, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on UD’s Hugh R. Sharp Campus in Lewes.

Bookstore gift cards in the amounts of $100, $75 and $50 will be awarded for first through third place, with honorable mention recognized. Teachers of winning students will receive gift cards toward classroom materials.

Coast Day, the College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment (CEOE) and Delaware Sea Grant’s premier celebration of the sea, attracts thousands of attendees every year. Participants can wander through tents featuring educational exhibits, tour research vessels, sample the region’s best seafood and develop a deeper appreciation for the sea and marine stewardship.

Teach Fleet model ships will return to Coast Day this year, back by popular demand. The Lego ships include small tug boats, large oil tankers and every size vessel in between. New this year, fleet designer and builder Wilbert McKinley will display a model of UD’s research vessel, the R/V Hugh R. Sharp, a project sponsored by Delaware Municipal Electric Corporation.

The Robotic Discovery Laboratories will also be open for a special exhibit. Visitors will see gliders, autonomous underwater vehicles and other advanced robots that UD researchers use to explore shark habitats and recover lost World War II planes, among other projects.

“We are excited to have the community back on campus for Coast Day after a two-year hiatus due to weather and then building renovations. Nowhere else in Delaware can families connect with researchers, ships and environmental education more than at Coast Day,” said Chris Petrone, marine education specialist with Delaware Sea Grant. “Asking students to plan a robotic discovery mission somewhere in Delaware through the essay contest engages them in the process of science and aligns well with the Next Generation Science Standards.”

Essay submissions are limited to 400 words. Entries must be post-marked or hand-delivered by close-of-business, Friday, September 15.

Entries can be mailed or delivered to:

Coast Day Essay Contest

Delaware Sea Grant—Marine Advisory Service

700 Pilottown Road

Lewes, DE 19958

See the Coast Day contests page for complete rules and guidelines or to read past winning entries.

For more information, visit the Coast Day website.


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