WASHINGTON, Oct. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- The JASON Project, an internationally recognized science program for middle-school students and an affiliate of National Geographic Society, today announced Sea Research Foundation, Inc. has assumed management of its operation.
Founded in 1989 by oceanographer and explorer Dr. Robert D. Ballard, JASON has connected over 11 million students with scientists through classroom learning experiences and hands-on exploration. The non-profit organization, headquartered in Ashburn, Virginia, has been an affiliate of National Geographic since 2005. JASON announced earlier this year that it would transition to independence by the end of 2010.
John Gersuk, Executive Vice President of JASON, said that under the new agreement JASON will be jointly governed by a board initially composed of representatives from Sea Research and National Geographic, with Ballard as chairman. Sea Research is the parent organization of Mystic Aquarium, Institute for Exploration and Immersion Learning.
"I want to thank the Society and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, JASON's longtime partner, for their loyal support of The JASON Project, and Sea Research for its leadership," Ballard said.
Dr. Steve Coan, president and CEO of Sea Research, said: "This relationship greatly expands our educational reach. The JASON Project is a renowned brand and will help build Sea Research's competencies and capabilities in digital media and informal learning across all our divisions, including Mystic Aquarium." Coan, who will serve as JASON's CEO, said JASON would maintain its brand identity and programming in cooperation with Sea Research's Immersion Learning division.
John Fahey, president and CEO of National Geographic Society, said: "JASON is uniquely positioned to make a meaningful contribution in the classroom, and their new relationship with Sea Research creates even more opportunities. National Geographic is proud to have played a role in JASON's growth to date, and we're delighted to continue to be involved in its future."
Ballard, a National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence, founded The JASON Project with support from the Society after his discovery of RMS Titanic prompted thousands of requests from young people to join his next expedition. Since its inception, JASON has provided students and teachers around the world with a cutting-edge program available in print and online.
SOURCE Sea Research Foundation