Detroit River Restoration Tour

Event Date: 8/17/2017

The Detroit River has seen its fair share of environmental challenges. Now, after years of dedicated restoration work, the Detroit River and its ecosystems are heading toward recovery.

On August 17, 2017, join the Friends of the Detroit River, Michigan Sea Grant, and our many partners as we celebrate the hard work and dedication of those who have helped shape a new future for the Detroit River. This is your opportunity to visit the habitat restoration sites of Grosse Ile and Belle Isle for an up close, behind the scenes, expert-guided tour.

During the event, you will have the opportunity to:

  • Tour Stony Island by boat
  • Visit the Dossin Great Lakes Museum on Belle Isle
  • See Belle Isle restoration highlights such as Lake Okanoka and Blue Heron Lagoon
  • Connect with river restoration groups, elected officials, media partners, and project supporters
  • Meet a live sturgeon

Would you like to join the celebration?


Contact: Mary Bohling, (313) 410-9431,

Hiring Program Coordinator

Event Date: 6/21/2017
End Date: 7/1/2017

Michigan Sea Grant (MISG) is seeking a motivated, organized, and outgoing individual with an understanding of Great Lakes and coastal issues to serve as a Program Coordinator. The right candidate will have a passion for sharing science-based information and be highly collaborative in their work. A combined effort of the University of Michigan and Michigan State University, MISG promotes knowledge of the Great Lakes through research, outreach, and education. MISG is part of the NOAA-National Sea Grant network of 33 university-based programs in coastal areas around the country.

See: Details and Apply


  • Assist with administration of the MISG research program, including:
    • Developing biannual Request for Proposals (RFPs), assisting with proposal review and selection, and coordinating initial and mid-term research meetings.
    • Monitoring research projects through funded period with annual check-in calls and review of progress reports.
    • Coordinating peer review of draft reports, providing summary of reviews to Principal Investigators (PIs), and coordinating publication and promotion of final reports and resources.
    • Assisting with production of annual reports for research program.
    • Providing support and coordination as project liaison for research PIs.
  • Coordinate community outreach projects with Michigan Sea Grant Extension, including:
    • Assisting with preparation, writing, and formatting of project plans, reports, grant proposals, and other documents as needed.
    • Coordinating as project liaison with MISG Extension and communication staff.
    • Coordinating with local communities, including providing logistical support and community analysis.
    • Coordinating and preparing progress and final reports and news briefs.
  • Provide general support for grant projects as needed, including summarizing meetings, activities, and accomplishments, and assisting with project coordination.
  • In collaboration with the MISG team, assist with the development of pre- and full proposals depending on opportunities, research, recommend, and coordinate project team, coordinate and implement work plan, and publish and promote training resources.
  • Assist MISG Extension specialists with promoting the use of educational resources and identifying cooperative efforts.
  • Initiate communications with stakeholders and partners.
  • Provide logistical and administrative support for MISG seminars and events. (Note: Some evening and weekend work and attendance may be required for seminars and events.)
  • Additional duties as may be assigned.

Required Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in a relevant field (e.g., environment policy, natural resource management, water related sciences) and 1 – 3 years’ relevant work experience, or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Ability to work independently and to meet a well-defined series of deadlines.
  • Excellent communication and presentation skills.
  • A strong network within the relevant resource management, policy-making, university and/or Great Lakes industry/business communities.
  • Detail oriented with the ability to manage multiple tasks and meet deadlines in a timely manner.
  • Strong computing skills, including Microsoft Office suite and Google apps, online research skills, and general comfort with web-based systems.

Desired Qualifications

  • Grant writing and grant management experience.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, with ability to work as a team member within established office structures.
  • Creative thinking and desire to contribute to a fun and inspired office environment.
  • Strong organizational skills and attention to detail.

Work Schedule

  • Monday – Friday 8:00am – 5:00pm.
  • Some evening and weekend attendance may be required for MISG seminars and events.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.

Fishing for Drum

Event Date: 6/17/2017

June 17, 2017, 8:00 am-10:00 am

Location: Historic Ottawa Beach Parks, Black Lake Boardwalk-West

Learn to catch big fish from shore! The freshwater drum is a hard-fighting native fish that eats invasive species like zebra mussels and round gobies. Also known as “sheephead”, the drum is related to prized saltwater species like redfish and seatrout.

Michigan Sea Grant Fisheries Biologist and Educator, Dan O’Keefe will lead participants in learning drum biology and how to catch them! Additionally, you’ll learn how to clean and cook this tasty fish.

Bring your own fishing equipment and a valid Michigan fishing license (youth under 17 years of age do not need a license). A limited number of loaner rods will be available if you do not have your own. You may also wish to bring sunscreen, polarized sunglasses, and bottled water.

Sleeping Bear Dunes Water Adventure Expo

Event Date: 6/17/2017

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is partnering with Michigan Sea Grant, area government agencies, and private organizations to host a free water adventure expo on Saturday, June 17, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., at Platte Point at the end of Lake Michigan Road. The Splash into Summer Water Adventure Expo will include water play safety demonstrations, skills practice, exhibits, and more.

The expo is an event for adults and kids who like to swim or paddle in rivers, inland lakes, or Lake Michigan. Kayak and stand up paddleboard (SUP) demonstrations, mock capsize/self-rescue exercises, and life jacket fittings are among the event offerings. Stations will also be set up for weather and rip current recognition, gear checklists, and drowning survival strategies. Face painting and scavenger hunts for kids will round out the expo. Food trucks will be on site or visitors may pack a picnic lunch.

Learn more about the expo at the event website!

Drill Conductor Training Courses

Event Date: 7/11/2017
End Date: 7/13/2017

Two Drill Conductor Training courses for Great Lakes commercial fishing vessel captains offered

On-vessel drill training is held at Red Cliff Indian Reservation during one of the 2016 Drill Conductor Training courses.

On-vessel drill training is held at Red Cliff Indian Reservation during one of the 2016 Drill Conductor Training courses. Photo: Jim Thannum | Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission

Commercial fishers are required to practice monthly emergency drills that cover 10 contingencies spelled out U.S. Coast Guard regulation.

Michigan Sea Grant, Wisconsin Sea Grant, the Alaska Marine Safety Education Association (AMSEA) and the Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission are coordinating two Drill Conductor Training courses that will be held at Bay Mills Indian Community (Michigan) and Red Cliff Indian Reservation(Wisconsin) this summer.

These courses will help Great Lakes commercial fishing vessel captains fulfill U.S. Coast Guard regulations related to instruction, drills and safety orientations, and onboard emergency instruction.

Required training

Commercial fishers are required to practice monthly emergency drills that cover 10 contingencies spelled out in the regulation. Persons conducting these drills must have passed a Drill Conductor Training course.

Contingencies covered include:

  • Abandoning vessel
  • Fighting fire in different locations on vessel
  • Recovering an individual from the water
  • Minimizing effects of unintentional flooding
  • Launching survival craft and recovering life boats and rescue boats
  • Donning immersion suits and other wearable floatation devices
  • Donning fireman’s outfit and self-contained breathing apparatus if equipped
  • Making a voice radio distress call and using visual distress signals
  • Activating the general alarm
  • Reporting inoperative alarm systems and fire detection system

Other requirements

Both drills and instructions must be conducted each month. Operators are required to give comprehensive orientations to all new persons coming aboard before departure. Commercial fishers need to have written safety information onboard. Depending on crew size this information needs to be posted if four or more crew members are onboard or kept as an available booklet if less than four crew members. AMSEA provides copies of the required information as part of the Drill Conductor class.

Emergency instruction must identify:

  • Survival craft embarkation stations aboard vessel and survival craft to which each individual is assigned
  • Fire and emergency signal and abandon ship signal
  • If immersion suits are provided, the location of suits and illustrated instructions for donning
  • Procedures for making a distress call
  • Essential action that must be taken in an emergency by each individual
  • Procedures for rough weather at sea, crossing hazardous bars, flooding, and anchoring of the vessel
  • Procedures to be used in the event an individual falls overboard
  • Procedures for fighting a fire

Who should attend?

The commercial fishing vessel operator or captain should be the one to attend a Drill Conductor class. If space is limited, we encourage the operator or captain to be the only participant from the crew. However, if there is room in class, we encourage crew members to participate, too. Most of our classes include both operators and crew. The schedule for the upcoming classes include:

All Drill Conductor classes run from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. and you must register at the AMSEA web site to attend one of the Drill Conductor classes. For additional information you can contact Ron Kinnunen (Michigan Sea Grant) at (906) 226-3687 or

Training rated ‘excellent’

Last year six classes were conducted in the Great Lakes region. The Drill Conductor Training courses were evaluated by the 77 attendees who rated the training as excellent and indicated the emergency drills on actual vessels helped increase their proficiency should an emergency arise. These courses had representation from commercial fishers from Lakes Superior, Michigan, Huron, and Erie and also included four U.S. Coast Guard personnel needing the training for their jobs.

Learn more

Read about experiences of previous trainees: Great Lakes commercial fishers get hands-on experience in emergency procedures

Celebrate Museum Week on Beaver Island

Event Date: 7/20/2017

Do you need a good reason to visit Beaver Island? Michigan Sea Grant educator Brandon Schroeder will give a presentation on “Great Lakes Fisheries Heritage Trail: People, Fish and Fishing” at 7 p.m. July 20 during the 37th annual Museum Week. The week is celebrated July 16-22, 2017, with fun activities happening all week. Complete schedule is online. Most events are free, except where tickets or admission is expressly noted, all other events are free will donations which benefit the Historical Society.

The Historical Society currently operates two museums on the Island, the Print Shop Museum and the Marine Museum, as well as two additional historical sites, Heritage Park and the Protar Home. It offers several resources and services to visitors, including genealogical research free of charge, copies of archival photos, and a series of historical journals and other books for purchase. Additionally, the museum hosts many events throughout the year to promote the Island’s history. 

Brandon works with coastal communities and businesses in northern Michigan to apply science-based knowledge to address Great Lakes and northern Lake Huron issues.

The Great Lakes fishery reflects the story of people, fish, and fishing; and how we relate to aquatic ecosystems, biodiversity, water quality, and environmental change. The Great Lakes fishery is the thread running through all these aspects, serving as the gauge of resource sustainability and quality of life for people. Brandon also co-authored, The Life of the Lakes: A Guide to the Great Lakes Fishery.

The Beaver Island Historical Society was founded in 1957 to collect and share the fascinating history of Beaver Island. A remote island in Lake Michigan, it has witnessed many interesting and unique historical events, and has been home to various groups including Native Americans, a Mormon branch known as the Strangites, Irish immigrants, fisherman, lumberjacks, and many more. For an overview of Beaver Island History click here.

Saint Mary’s River Celebration

Event Date: 6/10/2017


Join us as we celebrate the Little Rapids Restoration Project!

11:30 a.m. To 2:30 p.m. Rotary Park and Sugar Island, 1425 Riverside Drive,  Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.

Enjoy free rides on the Sugar Island Ferry, a fish boil luncheon, walking tour of the bridge and other fun events!

Children under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian during all activities

Little Rapids Activities: 
11:30 – 12:30 – Fish Boil lunch and sponsors tables
12:30 – 2:30 – Free rides on the Sugar Island Ferry! (Pedestrians only. Fees still aply for cars). 
12:30 – 2:30 – Little Rapids Bridge Walking Tour. Tables will be set up along the bridge where you can learn about the project and the river ecosystem.
12:30 – 2:30 – Life of the River Youth Activities (Pre-registration required) 

Additional Activities:
12:30 – 2:30 – Bishop Baraga Church Open House
12:30 – 2:30 – Aquatic Research Lab Open House
All Day – Go for a hike at a Little Traverse Conservancy Nature Preserve or Voyageur Island!

Registration is appreciated but not required for the fish boil and open walking tour, although registering for these events will help us with numbers and is appreciated. These events are suggested for children and adults of all ages. Registration is required for the youth oriented activities. Youth events are suggested for families with children age 9-14.

Please register online by June 9.

Downriver Linked Greenways Celebration

Event Date: 6/8/2017

You’re invited to the Downriver Linked Greenway Celebration. Bring your bicycle or walking shoes and join us for the Stroll and Roll Meet-up following the festivities.

When: Thursday, June 8, at 4pm
Where: Trenton City Hall, 2800 Third St., Trenton, MI
RSVP: Trenton Parks and Recreation by June 7, please call (734) 675-7300

2017 Summer Discovery Cruises

Event Date: 5/22/2017
End Date: 9/15/2017

Do you want to learn about the Great Lakes by being on the Great Lakes? If so, you will want to learn more about our 2017 Summer Discovery Cruises season!

For the 16th summer, Michigan Sea Grant Extension will provide Michiganders (and visitors to Michigan) with the opportunity to learn about the Great Lakes by being on the Great Lakes. Cruises depart from Lake Erie Metropark, with cruises on the lower Detroit River and Lake Erie, and Lake St. Clair Metropark, cruising Lake St. Clair.

The 2017 season offers more than 20 educational cruises around themes such as Fisheries, Wildlife, Wetlands, Shipwrecks, Lighthouses, Weather, Shipping and more. Cruises for educators wanting to enhance the use of Great Lakes content in their teaching are also provided, with stipends.

Some of the exciting cruises for the 2017 season include:

Lake St. Clair Fisheries – This is not a fishing cruise, but it definitely is a “fishy” cruise! Learn first-hand about the fish that are found in Lake St. Clair, many of which are available for hands-on examination during the cruise. We will be joined by a Michigan DNR Fisheries Biologist and rendezvous with their research vessel while out on the lake to observe fish tagging, measuring and other research operations.

Warfare on the Waterfront – The War of 1812, World War II, and even the American Civil War have all shaped the Detroit River and western Lake Erie. Long after the end of hostilities, remnants of this military presence can still be found. Join an Interpreter for an in-depth look at these conflicts, their sites and stories, and see how they impacted the region and the world.

Shipwreck at Sugar – Just under the waves off a crumbling Sugar Island dock lie the remains of a vessel sank in 1945. Travel with our resident historian to the wreck site to learn about the S.S. Seabreeze, the story of how it got there and the circumstances surrounding its mysterious sinking.

Birds, Boats & Booze (4 hour history cruise) – Many things brought people to the St. Clair River Delta Flats area. The abundant wetlands brought duck hunters and fishing. Wood boats and passenger steamers brought tourism and recreation, and Prohibition brought rumrunners and speakeasies to the region. Spend a little more time in “the flats” with us as we cruise farther up the South Channel and share a little of the past including stories of the big hotels, Tashmoo Park, Chris Craft boat building and more.

Great Lakes Science for Kids – Learn about the ecology of Lake St. Clair or Lake Erie, by using the tools a Great Lakes Scientist uses to determine water quality by studying the plants and animals of the lakes. Try your hand at using a plankton net, bottom dredge, water testing kit, underwater camera, and binoculars to discover the exciting nature of the lake and become a Great Lakes Scientist!

To learn about the Great Lakes by being on the Great Lakes, visit the Summer Discovery Cruises web site at for complete cruise descriptions, locations, dates and times, as well as directions on how to register for your 2017 Summer Discovery Cruises. Don’t miss the boat!

Hiring On-Call Sea Grant Support Staff

Event Date: 5/8/2017
End Date: 6/1/2017

Position Description

Michigan Sea Grant and MSU Extension are pleased to announce the availability of an on-call position beginning July 1, 2017.

The successful applicant will work as part of a team planning, organizing, implementing, and evaluating Sea Grant Extension Programming in coastal and Great Lakes communities. This position will include work on citizen science programs such as the Great Lakes Angler Diary, assistance planning for events including Regional Fisheries Workshops and the National Working Waterfronts Symposium, and work on educational materials including the Introduction to the Great Lakes online course. The successful applicant will interact with Sea Grant partners at the federal, state and local levels including anglers who volunteer for citizen science programs and natural resource professionals specializing in Great Lakes and coastal issues.

This position is located in West Olive in the Ottawa County MSU Extension office. 

Major Responsibilities

  • Assist three Sea Grant Extension Educators with secretarial support, data entry, management of e-mail lists, development of educational materials, and other duties related to program coordination, implementation, and evaluation.
  • Communicate with volunteers, natural resource professionals, and other stakeholders by phone, e-mail, and social media.
  • Other duties as assigned.



  • Strong writing, editing, data entry, and communication skills.
  • Proficiency with Excel, PowerPoint, and Word.
  • Demonstrated interest in Great Lakes issues, fisheries management, or coastal communities.
  • Ability to work independently and budget time efficiently.


  • Experience working with software including but not limited to Qualtrics, Survey Monkey, Mail Chimp, Adobe Creative Suite, Excel, Word and social media platforms.
  • Undergraduate coursework in fisheries management.
  • Ability to travel throughout the state.

Hours & Compensation

  • Approximately 12 hours/week on average and no more than 19 hours in any given week.
  • Some evenings and weekends required; occasional travel.
  • $13-15/hour depending on qualifications.
  • Travel expenses provided when required to perform work duties.

To Apply:  Send cover letter, unofficial transcripts, and resume to Dr. Dan O’Keefe,, by June 1, 2017.

About Michigan Sea Grant and MSU Extension

Michigan Sea Grant is a cooperative program of the University of Michigan (UM) and Michigan State University (MSU) and is part of the National Sea Grant College Program. Michigan Sea Grant supports research, education and outreach projects designed to foster science-based decisions about the use and conservation of Great Lakes resources. Sea Grant also supports extension educators located in coastal communities. These extension educators work within the MSU Extension system which includes offices and staff across the state dedicated to bringing the knowledge resources of MSU directly to individuals, communities, and businesses.