Kaitlin Baird, Women in an H2O world: Girl Power in Science (7), March 20, 2013

Margie Turrin

Margie Turrin- Science Education Coordinator at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
Margie Turrin- Science Education Coordinator at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory

Job Title:
Science Education Coordinator Program: Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of the Columbia University

What she does:

Margie’s job focuses on linking education and research in field based science. She works with students, teachers and college faculty, training and engaging them in collecting samples and data that they can study, and that research scientists can use to improve our understanding of estuaries and ocean systems. Whether she is living onboard a research vessel or land-based and organizing trainings, Margie is focused on helping expand the reach of science, developing and sharing ways that teachers and student groups can be involved in field based stud and research.

Favorite Part of her Job:
Hands down Margie’s favorite part is being out in the field. She loves working on a ship or along the shoreline – anything that is outside is OK! Aside from her own love of working in the field she enjoys being with students as they work outdoors since it is never what they expect! Students think science is like a lab experiment with a set beginning and end, but in the field things are always changing and you have to be able to think critically, make decisions and carefully record your data so that when you get back to the lab it makes sense and is usable.

What type of schooling/experience do you think best set you up for this job:
A background in biology and ecology was really helpful for Margie, but just as important is spending time volunteering or interning in any programs you can find that are related to your interest. Test it out before you commit your education to it,  see if you really like working outside in the field, being dirty and wet and collecting your own data and samples! Always be willing to say ‘yes I can help’ because that is where the real opportunities lie…and ask plenty of questions when you are helping on a project – that is how we all learn an scientists LOVE to talk about their work to an interested audience.

Olga Shatova

Olga Shatova- Graduate Student/Resarcher (marine ecology/biological oceanography)
Olga Shatova- Graduate Student/Resarcher (marine ecology/biological oceanography)

Job Title:
PhD student
Marine Science Department, University of Otago, New Zealand

What She does:
I am currently working on my PhD project that focuses on the role of nutrients recycled by seabirds for the phytoplankton productivity in the vicinity of sub-Antarctic islands. I’m doing my field working in the New Zealand sector fo the Southern Ocean: from off-shore Otago Peninsula to the Ross Sea, Antarctica.

 Favorite Aspect of job:
My job gets me to unique places protected from any public visits. Encounters with sub-Atarctic and Antarctic wildlife is really once in a lifetime experience.

What type of schooling/experience do you think best set you up for this job:
I think the most important goal is to get work experience outside the classroom. I value most 2 internships I’ve done in Moneterey Bay Aqurium Rsearch Institute and Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences; this helped me a lot in understanding marine science research and allow me to choose what to do.

Darcy Saxion

Darcy Saxion- Student
Darcy Saxion- Student and Volunteer Reseacher

Job Title:
Senior at SUNY-ESF – Volunteer on NOAA Autumn Bottom Trawl Survey

What She does:
As a volunteer on the NOAA Autumn Bottom Trawl, I measured, weighed, dissected, and classified many fish species. I learned where otoliths were located on various fish, learned how to extract them and compared the size of otoloths between various fish. Additionally I learned the classification difference between a scup and a croaker. Most importantly, I became increasingly aware that volunteering/interning for NOAA aboard the Henry Bigelow was the best hands-on out of the classroom learning experience I ever had. I highly recommend this experience to gain a step up in your education.

Favorite Aspect of the job:
My favorite aspect of the job was networking with the crew members; getting to know them, how they got where they are today, and how I can get there myself. Many teachers at SUNY-ESF and Sea Semester have always told me that networking is the main way to achieve your goals and get your dream job. With that in mind I asked for advice, got emails, and most importantly worked hard on this two week cruise to prove my strong work ethic.

What type of schooling/experience do you think best set you up for this job:
I have not graduated from College yet,  but would say my experience aboard the NOAA ship  Henry B. Bigelow and my past Sea Semester Ocean and Climate experience have been invaluable. Both are visual learning experiences where you’re thrown into a new routine – the learning curves are steep but I recommend them to every woman to better prepare for future jobs.

Claire Grenfell

Claire Grenfell- Student and Researcher
Claire Grenfell- Student and Researcher

Job Title:
Master of Science Marine Environmental Protection
Bangor University, Wales

What She does:
Claire is working towards completing her Master of Science degree in Marine Environmental Protection.  The degree consists of nine months taught courses and three months conducting an individual research project.  During the taught component of the course, Claire is undertaking five modules which each include a lecture period followed by a short research project.  Most recently, Claire conducted a survey to study the distribution of infaunal species along a sand beach in North Wales as a component of the Coastal Habitat module.

Favorite Aspect of job:
The many opportunities that Claire has to gain practical experience during her course, through field and laboratory work, is her favourite part of the degree so far.  She enjoys being able to complement the theory taught in lectures with the acquisition of skills through practical endeavours.

What type of schooling/experience do you think best set you up for this job:
Students accepted onto the course generally require academic or work experience in marine, environmental or biological sciences.  Claire completed her undergraduate degree in Environmental Science and gained practical experience in marine research through a Bermuda Program internship at the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences (BIOS).  She recommends gaining volunteer or work experience in a research environment before undertaking an MSc degree, even if you have a relevant academic background.

Grace Seo

Grace Seo
Grace Seo, Master of Science Student

Job Title
Master of Science Student
Marine Affairs and Policy, RSMAS, University of Miami

What she does
Grace works at the University of Miami Experimental Hatchery (UMEH). She works with cobia, mahi mahi, Florida pompanos, goggle eyes, and blackfin tuna. These are all species of pelagic fish that occur naturally in the waters off Miami. Her focus is live feeds, specifically rotifers. Rotifers are the first live feed that is given to the larvae after they have fully utilized their yolk supply. Live feed is essential to the survival of larvae that are spawned at UMEH. It is her responsibility to ensure the maintenance, growth, health, and quality of the live feed that are essential for larval survival and proper development. She also works with students to teach and guide them to learn the proper protocols of live feed management.

Favorite part of her job
Grace’s favorite part of her job is being a mentor. Having gone through the process of learning all the protocols to a successful aquaculture project, she understands the nuances that it takes to keep the fish healthy and productive. Since she went through the process of learning all the protocols herself, she can relate with upcoming students in their learning process. She is able to relay the message in a manner that makes sense to a person who is new to the aquaculture world.

What type of schooling/experience do you think best set you up for this job
Grace believes that a background in marine science will help but volunteer and hands-on practice is best for aquaculture. Understanding why certain protocols are followed is essential and is best learned through practical application. If you are interested in aquaculture, volunteering at a hatchery would be the best exposure that you can get.

aquatic careers
Girl Power in Science

Thanks for learning about all of these great women working in aquatic careers!

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