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Igniting a Spark: University of Miami Empowers Female Students With Immersive Stem Experiences; Canon U.S.A. Provided Camera Equipment and Training
Posted on Tuesday, April 30, 2024

MELVILLE, N.Y., April 30, 2024 – A day-long expedition led by the University of Miami’s Shark Research and Conservation Program through their Females In Natural Sciences (F.I.N.S.) initiative provided a dozen middle and high school girl students from underserved communities a hands-on marine science experience on March 20. The trip was part of an ongoing initiative to connect students with role models and show the potential career opportunities that await in the science and technology sectors, where women have been historically underrepresented.

The University of Miami has been a long-time Canon customer. Canon Solutions America (a wholly owned subsidiary of Canon U.S.A., Inc.) supported the shark research expedition that featured students and faculty from the university’s Rosenstiel School of Marine, Atmospheric and Earth Science.

In an ongoing effort by Canon to lean into the importance of environmental responsibility and supporting women in the field of marine science, The F.I.N.S. program’s mission is to provide middle and high school girls with an exciting hands-on experience as shark research volunteers under the mentorship of female University of Miami Rosenstiel School faculty and graduate students.

The program’s goal is to show the possibilities that exist for women through a supportive environment with accomplished professionals who are eager to help the next generation of scientists. Among those champions of the next generation is Dr. Catherine Macdonald, an assistant research professor and the director of the Rosenstiel School’s Shark Research and Conservation Program.

“As a female professor in marine biology, I am honored to inspire and mentor the brilliant minds of tomorrow to help break down barriers and empower young women to confidently pursue their dreams in STEM,” Macdonald said. “Through the FINS program, we can create a ripple effect of change that will refine what is possible and create a more inclusive and diverse future in the field of science and technology.”

Dr. Macdonald has more than a decade of research experience with sharks and rays and is an internationally recognized shark and interdisciplinary environmental scientist. Her expertise includes the biology and ecology of sharks, conservation policy, and the human dimensions of ocean conservation. The F.I.N.S. program remains part of her commitment to making the field of marine biology more inclusive.

To lend valuable support, Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, provided cameras, underwater housing and subsequent virtual training on Canon’s EOS R5 C camera, an amazing camera used to document this important endeavor. The EOS R5 C is a full-frame mirrorless cinema hybrid camera.

“We are thrilled to support the University of Miami in igniting a passion for STEM among students. Through immersive experience and outstanding technology, we empower the next generation of innovators and problem solvers,” said Shinichi “Sam” Yoshida, executive vice president and general manager, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “Together, we will fuel their curiosity and drive towards a brighter future.”

Click here to view a video of the University of Miami’s Shark Research and Conservation Program and F.I.N.S. in action.