Ulithi Youth Action Program

In 2015, the Ulithi Youth Action Program was developed by OPOR, in collaboration with Bluecology,  as a response to the community view that youth education is at the forefront of sustainable ocean management.

UYAP seeks to educate, inspire, & build confidence in the next generation of stewards through mentorship & exposure to traditional & contemporary field science.

Each summer, a dynamic team of college students, scientists & educators from California immerse themselves in a cultural exchange to address conservation challenges and potential solutions.

Eight students from California & Ulithi collaborate on community projects & data collection with support & guidance from the One People One Reef team.

Over 50% of UYAP participants are local residents; some of whom have never visited the reef environments within their own atoll. 

Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to the Ulithi Youth Action Program Scholarship Fund. Established in 2018, this fund provides financial assistance to the next generation of ocean conservation leaders.

Milo Tasopulu (left) and Clancy Taigumal (right) participated in our first Youth Action Program. Today, they are invaluable youth leaders and local scientists. UYAP participants from Ulithi & California have pursued further education in marine biology & environmental science so that they can return knowledge to their community.

Students learn about different sampling methods & how to conduct reef surveys in addition to attending lectures about coral reef ecology.

Students learn about global issues such as climate change, the impact plastic pollution has on  Ulithi, and the ways in which One People One Reef is helping the community adapt.

Students learn about traditional Ulithian coral reef and fisheries management and participate in community service activities.

Information & Expectations

Group Size Limit: 8

Leaders: May Roberts, John Rulmal Jr., Nicole Crane

Students need to know how to swim and be proficient snorkelers. All in-water work uses only snorkel gear. Weather will determine the order and possibilities of our water activities.

Yap & Ulithi are remote islands where medical personnel & general practitioner doctors are available; however the nearest full-service hospital is located in Guam.

Prior to departure, students will receive a suggested packing list, relevant health & safety information, as well as reading material to prepare for their experience. This will include information relating to the history, culture, ecology, and social issues of Yap and Ulithi including, but not limited to marine debris, climate change, waste disposal, imported food and related health issues

Tentative 2022 Dates: June 12 – July 1

Approximate 2022 Cost: $3985

Includes: Yap domestic airfare, local transportation, boating excursions, nature preserve fees, meals, dorm-style lodging, use of study facilities, research equipment

Does NOT include: airfare to Yap (from home), snacks, bottled water, snorkel gear, insurance

How to Apply

To complete an application, submit a short (500 word) essay to info@onepeopleonereef.org including answers to the following questions:

  1. Why do you wish to join the One People One Reef Ulithi Youth Program?
  2. What are your goals & interests?
  3. What abilities & attributes do you contribute to a team?
  4. How would participating in this program complement your academic or professional goals?

Your essay will be reviewed by the One People One Reef and Bluecology team.

There are three fees associated the program:

$100 Application Fee is due with your essay & secures your spot in a program. It is payable online & non-refundable upon acceptance.

$500 Program Deposit will be invoiced upon acceptance into the program & is due twelve weeks prior to the start of your program.

The Final Payment is due 60 days prior to departure date.

Checks can be made payable to “Bluecology” & mailed to:

336 Bon Air Center, Ste #155

Greenbrae, CA  94904

Past Expeditions

Student Testimonials

We are small islands making our voice heard. We can see that people are reacting to our message. I think I have contributed to expanding the knowledge of Ulithi to the rest of the world, so the world will know and remember Ulithi. Then, when they make decisions globally, they will consider our small island.

– Ulithian Student

Ulithi has a magical ocean, and a wonderful community, and the project is inspiring in its goals and its approach. I hope to be back, soon and often, and to continue working with One People One Reef.

– Californian Student

One accomplishment that I think of is the importance of sharing the knowledge and experiences of how we manage and the conserve the nature through science and traditional practices with the help of some of our scientist friends who care about us and volunteer their time, effort, and support to travel from far away places to come to our small islands.

– Ulithian Student

I learned way more applicable skills than I could ever learn in a classroom. Being in the field with our group of impressive scientists was a tremendous honor and amazing learning experience.

–Californian student

Being in the field with scientists was a tremendous honor and an amazing learning experience…in the field of marine science. It was physically hard work and psychologically intense, but amazingly rewarding and fun.

– Ulithian Student

On our expedition to Ulithi Atoll, I learned more applicable skills than I could ever learn in a classroom. This is the type of learning experience that can only be attained by doing — and I can think of no better place to achieve that than on this expedition.

– Californian Student

The message that will stay with me for years to come is to value nature and what it has given us to live on…The life in the water depends on the land and so does the land depend on the water

– Ulithian Student

I am honored to go to a place that is so magical, and welcoming. I could not say enough good things about this trip or my experience. It truly changed my life and my perspective on the world.

– Californian Student