Monterey Bay Aquarium

The future of our oceans depends on the next generation.

Our new Ocean Education and Leadership Center will give them a place to learn and grow.

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Children in the Discovery Lab Children at the Splash Zone Exhibit Students at the Kelp Forest Exhibit Child holding kelp at the Splash Zone Touch Pool

Each year, more than 110,000 schoolchildren and teachers take part in life-changing education programs at the Aquarium—and are inspired to care more, and do more, to protect our oceans. These remarkable experiences have led to a new generation of leaders ready to act on behalf of our natural world.

But each year, we turn away kids and educators because we're limited by facilities too small to meet the need. Demand for our programs is double or even triple the available capacity. We know we can do more.

The Ocean Education and Leadership Center

To meet this ever-growing demand for our school programs we're creating a state-of-the-art education facility that will support our state's schoolchildren and teachers. It is our most ambitious undertaking since opening the Aquarium.

Our new center will:

Double the number of staff-led programs for school groups.

More than double the number of programs for teachers.

Double the number of teens served in our conservation leadership programs.

Increase the number of students who visit each year by 10,000.

We Can't Do It Without You!

With a lead gift from the S. D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation, we recently acquired a building just a few blocks from the Aquarium. In order to bring the center and our expanded programs to fruition we need to raise $50 million.

We need your help. Your support will help make this unique opportunity a reality. Please join us and make your gift today!

Sage Shrader
"When I was younger, being a scientist was just a dream—like how everyone wants to be an astronaut when they're little—but now it's almost in reach."
– Sage Shrader, Young Women in Science alumna
Ryo Nakamura
"I discovered I can be a leader and help guide others to take action for the oceans. It takes just one step to jump-start something. Even the smallest act can have a huge impact later on."
– Ryo Nakamura, Teen Conservation Leader
Mayra Hernandez
"We realized how important the ocean is and how to take care of it. My kids talk constantly about things they've learned—as the children learn, we adults do too."
– Mayra Hernandez, Head Start Discovery Program parent
Gina Carrillo
"This experience was life changing in every way, shape and form. I had no idea how incredibly influential it would be for the rest of my studies."
– Gina Carrillo, Watsonville Area Teens Conserving Habitats alumna

Donate today

Two boys on the beach