NOAA Teacher at Sea
NOAA Ship Oscar Elton Sette
April 2-18, 2012
Mission: Comparison of Fishery Independent Sampling Methods
Geographical area of cruise: Tutuila, American Samoa
Personal Log: April 20, 2012
As I sit at the airport eating my peanut m&ms, it reinforced the bitter sweetness of today. On Thursday, I could still feel the swaying of the boat as I woke up. The day seemed to go fast and slow at the same time. I finished packing my bags, did some final clean up of our stateroom and helped with minor cleaning around the ship and with the scientific equipment. I even got called to the bridge. As Officer Ellis made the announcement over the ship’s PA system (with great enunciation of my last name by the way); it made me feel like I was being called to the principal’s office. Thankfully I wasn’t in any trouble, the NOAA Corps officers were only honoring one of my wishes of taking a group photograph of them.
Soon enough, the good-byes began. While most of the staff will see and work with each other again on different missions, different ships or even in the same office, I was saying good-bye knowing in the back of my mind that I may never see any of these people again. Everyone on the ship was so welcoming and very generous with their time. Everyone involved made my journey a great one. I was intrigued by their career paths and now have plenty of information to share with my corpsmembers. Regrettably, I may not see them again but they will definitely receive e-mails from me, as my work is not done.
While I am happy to be home, I feel like a student on the cusp of graduation, wishing I could’ve done more and wondering whether I did enough. I look forward to creating a summary of my experience and developing two lesson plans in the next few months. I want to express my gratitude to everyone involved in making this opportunity come to fruition including all the NOAA Teacher at Sea staff, everyone on the ship and my co-workers for picking up the slack while I have been away.
Thank you for the journey!