Throughout the month of April, UW Tacoma — and other venues throughout the city — will host a speaker series that bring light to our oceans and the importance of protecting our seas. Each event throughout April will run from 7–9 p.m. every Tuesday night. Of the five events in total, three are scheduled to be held at UWT in William W. Philip Hall.

The first edition of the series — entitled “Lightning Talks” — was held last week at Fawcett Avenue’s Alma Mater. Local environmental speakers were given just five minutes to convey their main ideas and points.

The rest of the series is now scheduled to take place on campus, with the exception of the screening of “Sharkwater Extinction” to be held April 16 at the Grand Cinema at 7 p.m. The next installment of Ocean Voices series will take place April 9 in William W. Philip Hall, and is entitled “Our Ocean and You.”

Referring to a Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium press release, Tuesday’s event will feature underwater photographer Annie Crawley and paddle boarder Dean Burke “for an evening of breathtaking imagery and calls to action.” The event aims to bring important issues of dumping plastic and other trash into the ocean to light.

Following Tuesday’s event at William W. Philip Hall, the Grand Cinema will screen Rob Stewart’s “Sharkwater Extinction” April 16, which ‘exposes the illegal shark fin industry.’ A Q&A with Gavin Wuttken — Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium’s dive safety officer — will succeed the film.

Point Defiance’s speaker series returns to UWT April 23 with “Uncovering Ocean Mysteries,”  which will feature world scientists and zoo staff who study various marine life, including hammerhead sharks and endangered sea turtles.

To close out the the five-part event, William W. Philip Hall will host ‘Ocean Heroes’ — a night devoted to showcasing those who protect our oceans. Per the Point Defiance press release, noted attendees include Rachel Graham from MarAlliance and Ikkatsu Project founder Ken Campbell, to illegal wildlife trafficking heroes Detective Lauren Wendt and K9 Benny, who has been trained to find illegal shark products.

Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium’s primary goal is to “bring ocean scientists, explorers and photographers together,” while inspiring us to all help protect the ocean. All events are free for the public, including UWT students.

Be sure to attend Point Defiance’s speaker series to learn more about how you can help protect our seas, help marine life and contribute to a better environment!

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