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Cold-Water Safety Training Helps Alaska Teen Survive

We received that happiest email message the other day.


Our family would like to thank you for the cold water safety training your organization provides students in the Sitka School District.

Our daughter, Ceanna, capsized in her kayak with her Aunt & Uncle while near Kruzoff (Island) this summer. They had a difficult time getting to shore, were in the water for an extended period of time, separated and she was lost for several hours. The Coast Guard was finally able to find her on a beach.

Afterwards she mentioned she'd never complain about her cold water safety, swimming, or survival training again. She acknowledged thinking back to the education she was given. It had an impact on her actions during the event and gave her comfort realizing she knew what to do…

The school district's commitment to marine safety education, we believe, helped save our daughter's life. From the bottom of our hearts.... thank you for bringing our daughter back to us.


Jerry, Richelle, Ceanna, Makayla & J.D. Murphy

We couldn't be happier about this outcome and thank the Murphys for letting us know how their daughter was helped by AMSEA training.

Most people probably associate AMSEA with cold-water safety & survival training for commercial fishermen. Perhaps less well known, is that we also train school teachers and other youth educators. They go on to teach many of these same skills in their schools and youth groups. While AMSEA has trained more than 20,000 commercial fishermen, AMSEA-trained educators have taught twice as many children, mostly in Alaska public schools.

The Sitka School District had made a particular effort to integrate AMSEA’s cold-water safety & survival training into their curriculum. The district has included teacher-lead training activities in first, third, fifth, seventh, and ninth grades. The activities include age-appropriate classroom and field activities focused on personal flotation devices, cold-water survival, shore survival, and ice-safety skills. In addition to AMSEA-trained educators, the district has been successful in obtaining assistance from the local U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary and U.S. Coast Guard personnel for staffing activities. AMSEA staff also help with field activities.

Cold-water safety and survival training has been included in the curriculum at Sitka’s schools since 2005. Students now anticipate the activities. Many especially look forward to the third-grade harbor swim and the fifth-grade shelter building exercises.

AMSEA is currently offering two online training opportunities for teachers and other youth educators that want to bring cold-water safety training to their schools or youth organizations. Offered in partnership with the University of Alaska Southeast-Sitka, the training focuses on the skills needed to present AMSEA’s proven K-12 curriculum, Surviving Outdoor Adventures.

A class will be offered in the upcoming fall and spring semesters. All course work is online and there are no lectures to attend. Students will study on their own schedule and earn two graduate-level (593) semester hours of college credit.

Click the link below to learn more about AMSEA’s online training for educators. You can teach your students skills that will last a lifetime and just may save a life. AMSEA Training for Educators

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