Sal Castro Middle School 8th grade students experienced a unique outdoor science school at Catalina Island Marine Institute. Students participated in hands-on learning by exploring the island's terrestrial ecology and discovering marine biology through field activities that include snorkeling, kayaking, and hiking. The three day adventure is designed to create excitement about science, develop character and cultivate social skills. It is an opportunity for students to conduct experiments that include squid dissections, familiarize themselves with marine life using touch tanks and become active participants in sustaining our natural environments. The program challenges students physically and mentally with rock climbing and team building activities. Students walk away from this STEM based program with a deeper understanding of themselves and the world around them preparing them to be critical and engaged thinkers.