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Camp SEA Lab operates through California State University Monterey Bay (CSUMB) as a program of the Division of Science and Environmental Policy.

Camp SEA Lab offers a wide range of programs along the shorelines of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary.

Child in wetsuit, mask, and snorkel

Our Mission

Camp SEA Lab fosters lifelong excitement, scientific understanding, and stewardship of our coasts and ocean by providing quality marine oriented programs that promote science, education and adventure for youth, families and teachers.

Program Objectives
2 Girls Measuring Water

Hands-on Education: Get out, on and in the waters around the central coast! Youth are encouraged to dive into learning in the interactive “classroom” of our natural environment.

Stewardship & Conservation: Children gain knowledge and insight on how to preserve and protect the marine environment unique to the Monterey Bay.

Emphasis in Career Development: Participants learn the many avenues that can lead them into a life with marine science, including the education and experience necessary to help them succeed!

Innovative Technology: Camp SEA Lab partners with innovative research institutions and uses cutting edge technology such as Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV's) to provide youth a close up look at the undiscovered regions throughout the bay.

Support Diversity: Participants represent a broad diversity of backgrounds and experiences. The program is designed to serve all youth regardless of ethnic or socio-economic background.

Program Offerings

Day & Residential Summer Camps: For youth ages 8-17, participate in any number of specialized programs throughout the summer in weeklong day, residential or SEA Guides junior leadership opportunities. Camp locations range throughout the Monterey Bay region.

Room with Several BedsOutdoor School: Experience ‘school’ without walls! Students in grades 3-8 can further their understanding and experience of the natural environment by attending customized school programs. Single day and 3-5 day residential programs are available.

Teacher Development Resources: Learn how to bring marine science into your classroom, with support from our staff! Attend a skill-building workshop, check-out a curriculum kit, or gain new curriculum ideas.

Family Workshops: Students of all ages can participate in one of our Camp SEA Lab family programs. Bring grandma, grandpa, aunts and uncles—everyone can come and explore the diversity of marine ecosystems!


In 1997, a group of local teachers, scientists and resource managers got together and expressed their concern over the lack of ocean science education in our schools. They then began to develop a plan to create a youth residential marine science program that would address this need and capitalize on the unique natural and institutional resources of Monterey Bay.

This plan was strengthened from the start by broad-based local input and seed funding from the Packard Foundation, California Sea Grant and the California Coastal Commission. With this community driven vision, dedicated partnerships and unique opportunities, Camp SEA Lab was born and offered its first programs in the summer of 2000.

Today, Camp SEA Lab operates through California State University Monterey Bay (CSUMB) as a program of the Division of Science and Environmental Policy, and has close partnerships to several Monterey Bay area science institutions. Camp SEA Lab is additionally supported by Friends of Camp SEA Lab, a 501 (c)3 nonprofit organization comprised of a Board of Trustees from the local community and collaborating institutions.

Welcome to Camp SEA Lab YouTube Video

Welcome to Camp SEA Lab Video

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Camp SEA Lab offers a wide range of programs along the shorelines of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, which is home to a bounty of natural resources and over 25 marine-related research and education institutions. This exceptional environment makes an ideal setting for experiential programs to excite youth about science and the ocean. Our summer camps take place from Santa Cruz, Moss Landing, Monterey, and Carmel, and our residential school programs are located in southern Santa Cruz County.

Hands-on Education
Innovation Technology
Teacher Development

Celebrating 10 Years

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