Ride the Waves

WavesArtBT2013Ride the Waves is an experiential science outreach program funded by the General Motors Corporation. Through hands on science excursions aboard Michigan Techs research vessel the Agassiz and in the Great Lakes Research Centers labs, students and teachers learn about the Great Lakes, STEM careers, environmental awareness and education.


May-Sept 2019 for Students in Grades 4-12 

Fun!  FREE!  Educational!

Register your class or group Here!

Ride the Waves with GM invites youth in Grades 4-12 to join scientists from Michigan Tech in the exploration of Lake Superior, Keweenaw Bay and/or Portage Lake.

Groups of 5 or more students will be given preference in scheduling, so get with your friends and form a group!

Ride the Waves with GM invites Copper Country youth in Grades 4-12 to join scientists from Michigan Tech’s Great Lakes Research Center in the exploration of Lake Superior, Portage Waterway and Torch Lake. There are 4 programs to choose from—each ~4 hours in length—that will accommodate up to    18 youth and chaperones.

¨  Aquatic Food Web & Lab Investigation (1.5 hours lab; 1.5 hours Agassiz)

Investigate water quality and collect samples to examine in the lab to find out “How Do You Make A Lake Trout?” All ages.

 ¨  Mine Waste Remediation & Torch Lake Restoration  (2 hrs land; 2 hrs Agassiz)

Students explore the history of the “Copper Country by land and water’. Students visit the Ahmeek stamp mill—‘the last mill standing’ to experience an historic copper milling site, assess the effectiveness of the Torch Lake Superfund remediation using EPA protocols, and sample the sediments and organisms in Torch Lake to evaluate ecological recovery. Ideal for Grades 6-8 students.

 ¨  Navigation Exploration: Math in Action (2 hours classroom; 2 hours Agassiz)

Students use chart dividers and compasses to determine the Agassiz’s position on a navigational chart and then navigate the Agassiz to a new location. Students will use algebra to determine the accuracy of their navigation. Ideal for Grades 8-12 students.

¨  Jacobsville Geoheritage (1.5 hours land; 1.5 hours Agassiz)

Explore the fantastic history and geology of historic Jacobsville, where sandstone quarries were very active from 1883 to 1896, when the sandstone was used for many buildings in Michigan, Wisconsin, and all over the eastern US. The sandstone was shipped from docks right offshore. Students will visit the sandstone cliffs, old quarry docks and South Entry data buoy to pull up live data. On land, they will explore the history of White City and have lunch at White City Park.  Meet at White City Park.  Ideal for Grades 4-12 students.


In Addition to single day learning experiences Ride the Waves also offers several multi-day immersive programs for High School students and teachers. General Motors  has funded Summer Teacher Institutes for teachers from the Grand Rapids and Flint areas as well as a week long exploration for Flint area students.

For a glimpse of what students might do on a Ride the Waves trip browse the videos below from Kyle who was part of our 2017 Flint Student Experience: