Whitsunday Discovery Tours staff and associates have many years of experience organising school excursions and study tours in areas such as biology, marine studies and environmental science. Facilitators are experienced and highly regarded in their fields of expertise, with a broad knowledge of the Great Barrier Reef and Whitsunday region. Find out more about some of our facilitators below.
Kay Kent established Whitsunday Training in 1995 to deliver and coordinate study tours, school excursions and other education programs for groups visiting the beautiful Whitsunday islands and surrounding region. Whitsunday Discovery Tours is the latest addition to her expanding business, focusing on the needs of teachers and students from Year 5 to Year 12. Kay is actively involved in the study tours that she coordinates, providing support to group leaders from arrival to departure and being available to clients during the whole of their stay in the Whitsundays.
Tony Fontes has spent the past 30 years living and working in the Whitsundays. As a dive instructor and underwater explorer, he has spent much of that time under the sea, making him one of the most experienced and knowledgeable divers on the Great Barrier Reef. There is nothing he loves more than sharing that knowledge, particularly with the younger generation. For the past 15 years, Tony has introduced kids aged 8 to 18 to the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef. He regularly works with local schools as well as schools from abroad. Tony has designed a variety of programs for youth that give them real hands-on experience in reef understanding and conservation
Alana Trott was born in Townsville and was brought up in the typical North Queensland style – sailing, diving and hiking. She studied a Bachelor of Science at James Cook University in Townsville and has been fortunate to conduct research in rural Australia, Borneo and Denmark. Alana has educational experience through North Queensland Science Education Centre and Student Ambassador work and has worked as a Conservation Team Leader in Cairns. Alana loves both asking and answering questions about the environment.
Jacquie Sheils is a marine biologist who has worked on the Reef since 1993 as a reef interpretive guide. She has extensive knowledge of all things reef and is experienced at presenting the reef to the wider community. Jacquie works with snorkelers, divers, teachers, student groups, volunteer organisations, journalists and film crews, helping them to make the most of their experience on the Great Barrier Reef. She has managed Seagrass Watch Whitsundays since 2010. She is also actively involved with a number of volunteer organisations, including the OUCH Volunteers (Order of Underwater Coral Heroes), Whitsunday Local Marine Advisory Committee, Ecobarge Clean Seas, and the GBRMPA Eye on the Reef and Sightings Network programs. Jacquie’s qualifications include:
- Master of Applied Science (Marine Biology – Research) – JCU Townsville
- Bachelor of Science (Genetics / Plant Biotechnology) – University of Melbourne
- PADI Divemaster