Earth to Sky is an exciting, growing partnership between NASA, the National Park Service (NPS), and other federal agencies as well as state and local organizations. Together, we enable interpreters and environmental educators to access and use NASA science to develop excellent climate change interpretation at their sites. The Earth to Sky (ETS) community of practice numbers over 1,100 informal educators stationed at parks, refuges, museums, nature centers, and in communities across the country. Together, they reach millions of visitors annually.
ETS conducts professional development events that bring together NASA and other experts with informal educators, encouraging participants to integrate relevant climate data and stories into new and existing interpretive products. In addition, we are expanding a new regional model, supporting interdisciplinary teams of leaders in establishing their own communities of practice under the ETS umbrella. These teams develop ETS courses tailored to their geographic area, empowering participants to connect issues relevant to their sites with global climate science.
What does your team hope to achieve?
ETS acts as a powerful vehicle for incorporating NASA climate and Earth science resources into interpretive, educational, and outreach products at parks and other interpretive centers. As we maintain and expand this interagency partnership, ETS will:
- Provide a common point of contact for informal educators in the NPS, US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), National Weather Service (NWS), and other state and local organizations to collaboratively engage with NASA climate science
- Create and conduct professional development for informal educators through in-person climate communication courses across the country and access to a library of archived courses and presentations
- Expand our impact through the regional communities of practice model, providing training and ongoing support for regional leadership teams
- Promote relevant climate science, education, and communication resources to the ETS community
- Facilitate connections between other Science Mission Directorate and Science Activation teams and informal educators to extend the reach and impact of SMD/Science Activation efforts
My time was very well spent with these NPS interpreters who are interested and know how to use the information. I want to do a certain amount of outreach and share my work but it’s difficult to do it efficiently on my own. This was very productive and an efficient effort. — NASA Scientist, Earth to Sky
This was a really excellent experience. Hearing directly from so many exceptional scientists has been a fantastic opportunity. Having so much NASA media/data available to us will allow me to produce a much better product than otherwise. It’s a real honor to be part of ETS4 and it will make a tremendous benefit to my refuge’s outreach activities. - ETS Course Participant
This has been an exciting and wonderful first step that will have a major impact (positive) on all of my interpretive and environmental education efforts for the last quarter of my life. I have not felt this inspired in a long while. The extent of the new resources is staggering. The people of NASA are quite amazing. Their attitudes and openness along with their abilities was extraordinary — NPS Ranger, Earth to Sky