SeaPerch is an underwater robotics program sponsored by the Office of Naval Research (ONR) through the MIT Sea Grant Program. The purpose is to recruit the next generation of naval engineers and architects and expose students to Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, (STEM), subjects . ONR promotes naval engineering for younger students by funding K-12 with naval engineering based projects. One of these projects is the called the SeaPerch Teach, Build and Become program. SeaPerch is a project where the students build an ROV (Remote Controlled Vehicle) called a Sea Perch. The National website for the SeaPerch program contains background information, lessons plans and other resources for both teachers and students. The website can be found at: http://www.Seaperch.org/
On March 24, 2012, Drexel University, teaming with NSWC Philadelphia and ASNE-DV will host the Greater Philadelphia SeaPerch Challenge, an engineering competition for middle and high school students in which they navigate ROVs through an underwater obstacle course, as well as provide oral poster presentations and a team summary notebook. The competition is the culmination of a teaming effort between the Office of Naval Research, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's (MIT) Sea Grant, the NAVSEA Warfare Centers (Carderock Division Philadelphia), the American Society of Naval Engineers-Delaware Valley Section (ASNE-DV), the Office of College and Career Awareness, Drexel University, and the Delaware Valley Industrial Resource Center.
ASNE-DV and NSWC Philadelphia embraced SeaPerch as an Outreach program because it is an educational, challenging and fun way to get kids excited about naval engineering. Drexel was our first enthusiastic partner. ASNE-DV sponsored a workshop, administered by MIT, and hosted by Drexel on the University Campus on March 4, 2006 to help area teachers prepare students for this competition. The workshop included information on how to build a Sea Perch (ROV), and guidance on teaching students the engineering principles involved in the technology. The competition, itself, will involve more than 800 students. More information can be found at: http://www.phillyseaperch.org