Nov. 16, 2021
PRA Group Partnership, Totaling $250,000, Funds Virginia Aquarium’s Student Programs & New Jellyfish Exhibit
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va., Nov. 16, 2021 – The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center is back in the classroom teaching marine science to students across the Hampton Roads region. The Aquarium launched its virtual and in-person education programs to schools in Norfolk, Hampton, and Danville which were underwritten by PRA Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: PRAA), a global leader in acquiring and collecting nonperforming loans.
A long-time partner, the locally based PRA Group’s $75,000 gift will fund three years of the Aquarium’s education programming. “Our company is committed to giving back to organizations that strengthen the communities in which we live and work,” said Chris Graves, PRA Group’s executive vice president, global investment and analytics officer, and Virginia Aquarium Board of Trustees member. “We are excited to partner with the Aquarium in expanding the breadth of what children are learning in the classroom to include real-world applications, especially as our public schools return to Standard of Learning (SOL) testing this year.”
This school year, the Virginia Aquarium will host 250 programs for students in Kindergarten through 7th grade. Program topics vary and are curated to meet curriculum and SOL requirements for each grade level. For example, Sea Turtle Survivor for the first and second grades explores the Aquarium’s Light Tower exhibit and teaches students how to identify sea turtles’ life stages and what it takes to survive in the open ocean; the fifth grade Ocean Zones program reveals the zones of life in the ocean and the adaptations of animals surviving in the deep, dark sea; and Live Animal Encounter at the seventh-grade level focuses on comparing major animal groups such as fish, reptiles, birds, mammals and amphibians.
Beyond the classroom, PRA Group is the title sponsor of the Virginia Aquarium’s new South Building grand opening and dedication events, with a total of $175,000 pledged to the upgraded facility—expected to open in spring of 2022. The donation to the capital campaign supported the new jellyfish touch pool, exhibiting the lifecycle of jellyfish and allowing guests to feel the belly of moon jellies, a common local species.
“These gifts from PRA Group allow our team to create memorable experiences and advance our facilities for students and guests. Their generosity and steadfast partnership will leave a lasting impact on the Virginia Aquarium,” says Suzanne Savage, Chief Development Officer.
Be a part of the Virginia Aquarium’s mission by making a tax-deductible donation. Visit the website for more information.
About PRA Group
As a global leader in acquiring and collecting nonperforming loans, PRA Group returns capital to banks and other creditors to help expand financial services for consumers. With thousands of employees worldwide, PRA Group companies collaborate with customers to help them resolve their debt. For more information, please visit www.pragroup.com.
About Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center
The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, and the Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums. The Aquarium is also a member of World Association of Zoos and Aquariums. The Virginia Aquarium’s mission is to inspire conservation of the marine environment through education, research, and sustainable practices. It is located at 717 General Booth Boulevard, just south of Rudee Inlet in Virginia Beach.
The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, supports the work of the Virginia Aquarium. The Foundation procures and maintains the Aquarium’s exhibits, including the animals and habitats. It is also responsible for annual and capital fundraising, administration and funding for the Virginia Aquarium Stranding Response Program, conservation and scientific research efforts, and the Aquarium’s mission-related education programs. You can be a part of our mission by making a tax-deductible donation to support our programming.
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