National Geographic explorers to give public talk on September 25, as apart of a workshop for South

National Geographic

MIAMI — August 18, 2010 — A free public presentation at University of Miami (UM) on Saturday September 25, will feature National Geographic Society (NGS) Vice President of Research, Conservation and Exploration John Francis, NGS Emerging Explorer and UM Professor Kenny Broad, and North Face athlete Peter Athans, describing their adventures both underwater and in exotic locales around the globe. The event will take place at 7:30 p.m. in the Storer Auditorium at UM’s Coral Gables campus. 

John Francis will discuss his role at NGS, as well as his work on the ‘Crittercam’, a research tool that can be worn by wild animals to obtain video and audio recordings and environmental data. Francis pioneered the use of ‘Crittercam’ to study marine mammals. The program will also feature Kenny Broad, who participated in a challenging expedition to study underwater caves and ‘blue holes’ in the Bahamas, as stunningly depicted in the cover story of the August 2010 National Geographic magazine. Pete Athans will share highlights from his journeys to Nepal’s remote Kingdom of Mustang, where above-ground caves have rare pre-Buddhist antiquities. 

The public presentation follows a daylong workshop for South Florida students, also held at the University of Miami. The Young Explorer grants support individuals between the ages of 18 and 25 in their pursuit of research, exploration, and conservation-based field projects.

“We chose the University of Miami because of its long history with the National Geographic Society, which has awarded 51 grants to 21 scientists, beginning as far back as 1960,” Francis said. “Interdisciplinary approaches, like those of UM’s Abess Center for Ecosystem Science & Policy, have grown significantly in recent years, yielding new ideas and exciting one-of-a-kind projects to support.”

The UM workshop will enable students interested in pursuing Young Explorer grants to meet with recent grant recipients and National Geographic explorers, conservationists, and researchers. They will learn about the kinds of projects the program aims to support and will have an opportunity to discuss their ideas for field projects with National Geographic grantees and staff.

“Until starting the Young Explorers program, we have tended to fund more established researchers in the past. We realized we would do well to support younger candidates on their first projects and thus reach a fruitful, new sector,” Francis said. “With our increasingly diverse media and growing number of young explorers, we hope to better reach our vision, which is to inspire people to care about the planet.”

The September 25 workshop at the University of Miami is hosted by the UM Rosenstiel School of Marine & Atmospheric Science, the UM Leonard and Jayne Abess Center for Ecosystem Science and Policy and the UM School of Communication, with generous support from the National Geographic Society, the Brinson Foundation, Kiehl’s, and North Face.

Fascinating, free talk by National Geographic Society (NGS) and North Face explorers
John Francis, VP of Research, Conservation and Exploration at NGS; Kenny Broad, NGS Emerging Explorer and UM Professor; North Face athlete Peter Athans
The three speakers will share their adventures in the exciting pursuit of knowledge, both underwater and on dry land
University of Miami, Storer Auditorium
Saturday, September 25, 2010
7:30 p.m.

national geographic •  national geographic society •  kenny broad •  peter athans •  john francis •  workshop •  lecture •