Understanding the Membership of the National Marine Educators Association (NMEA) and What Drives Participation From Stakeholders
The organization's members are reflective of the national demographics of educators—female (70%) and white (82%). Most NMEA members are involved in formal or informal education (>75%). There is a diverse membership age range and a large range in the number of years members have been involved in marine education. NMEA needs to ensure that there are professional development opportunities for each of these types of educators while leveraging the diverse experiences of its membership to enhance collaborative partnerships. While new NMEA members are joining to attend the annual conference, national membership uptick in the region of the most recent conference is not sustained.
Recruitment, engagement, and retention of members at all levels is important to the future of NMEA and other professional organizations. In addition to creating opportunities that address current membership needs, we hope these findings can be used as a baseline to measure the effectiveness of new member initiatives—including those designed to enhance diversity.