The student coalition is the student arm of the American Cetacean Society (ACS), the world’s oldest whale conservation organization.  


The ACS Student Coalition (ACSSC) is a community of future researchers, policy makers, conservationists, and enthusiasts committed to bettering the marine environment and lives of cetaceans.  The Coalition works to provide students with an opportunity to feel inspired, engaged, and empowered among an active community through a web of regional student groups across the country.Through local directed action informed by science, ACSSC  groups act as forums where students can learn more about cetaceans and their marine environment and carry out the most effective, research-based responses to the perils that cetaceans and their home face. The Coalition works to provide students of all skill sets with support and access to a community of other young professionals, experts in the field, and with the full support of the American Cetacean Society.




Not Just About Cetaceans 

The ACS student coalition's activities and campaigns cover an array of topics related to ocean health and marine conservation in addition to cetacean focused ones. Cetaceans are credited with igniting the spark that led to the world's first global environmental movement, which first began as the "Save the Whales" movement. Whales and dolphins are an iconic ‘umbrella’ species. Cetaceans are charismatic and hold significant cultural value and as a consequence, they help inspire people to consider other marine conservation matters. These other equally important issues include the destruction of other ecologically important species, ocean acidification, marine plastics pollution, fishing, etc., are at the heart of the ACS student coalition. In a way, cetaceans are a 'gateway species' that get us hooked on marine conservation!  



A Beginning in the Heart of the USA

The ACS Student Coalition came to life at Indiana University, in the middle of the country! As bizarre as a landlocked marine conservation group may sound, this passionate group of Midwesterners successfully organized campaigns, community education initiatives, guest speaker events, among many other accomplishments. These students understood that the health of the marine world and its inhabitants are integral to our own survival. The campus group began with a sustainable seafood campaign and added in campaigns on cetaceans in captivity, and plastics pollution. While they did not have a beach to clean up, the group led community river clean ups and did local river water quality testing to educate the community on watershed health. The founder of the ACS student coalition eventually moved on from Indiana to focus upon national expansion of the now national student coalition.


Lead Your Own Student Group


Students in Action

University of Hawaii Manoa

Texas A&M University Corpus Christi

University of Hawaii Hilo

University of Wisconsin-Madison