Shark Tagging with Breakthrough Miami

by Laurel Zaima, RJD Intern
Saturday, November 10th, 2012

After all of the late nights studying for my tests, and quizzes, Saturday could not have come fast enough! Before I knew it, the count down was finally over and I was driving down to Islamorada with Christine. Unfortunately, when we arrived at Captain Curt’s house, the weather was looking a little grim and the wind just began to pick up. Regardless of the weather, everyone remained optimistic! Captain Curt informed us that we would be going to a shallow site that was approximately 15-22 feet  in hopes that the water would be less choppy. Little did we know, we underestimated the power of the waves.

As we waited for our guests to arrive, we each predicted which species of shark we were going to encounter that day. Although there was a little discrepancy about what we were going to catch, we all agreed that this shark tagging expedition had good vibes. Fortunately, we were correct, and the student group was able to have a great educational and hands on experience. We went out with a group that is apart of a program called Breakthrough Miami. This program assists low income and disadvantaged students and their families that reside in the Dade County. The students of the Breakthrough Miami program are taught, supervised, and mentored by high school student volunteers from Palmer Trinity School (grades 6-12). We hosted 15 middle schools students, 3 high school mentors, and the program’s chaperones on Saturday’s trip. We were thrilled to be hosting this program because Leann Winn, one of the RJD trip leaders, is a teacher at Palmer Trinity School, and she raved about how wonderful and intelligent these students are.

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