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North America


 

CAROLINA

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Coastal Carolina University | MARISA TAYLOR

“Hi my name is Marisa and I am working towards my marine science major. I plan on working on protection rights towards sharks and sea turtles. I have always had such a connection to the sea and I plan on carrying the sea with me forever.”

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Coastal Carolina University | SAMANTHA SRITE

“Samantha Srite is a marine science major and a biology minor hoping to study deep sea creatures and their behaviors when she graduates. Her last research was done in Xpu-Ha, Mexico for a college course. She studied the dusky damselfish and their territorial behaviors. She is currently an open water certified diver and is working towards being an advanced and scientific diver this year.”

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Carteret Community College | bARBIE leBrun

“Barbie LeBrun is an older student seeking a PhD in Anthrozoology in the United States. She works as a citizen scientist in several capacities around the beautiful Bogue Banks. Seasonally, Barbie works as a naturalist with Carolina Ocean Studies. As part of her research and as part of her hobby, Barbie runs with dolphins. As time and inspiration allows, Barbie pens books.”


Oregon

Florida

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Eckerd College | Tiffany Havel

“My name is Tiff, and I am known as “that coral lady Tiff” at my school. I have done research on microplastic concentrations on coral reefs in the Pacific and researched the impacts of marine debris on the reefs of Roatan. I also do coral restoration work in Key Largo and in Roatan and currently I have secured an internship with NOAA and the FL aquarium raising many different endangered species of coral that use to dominate the Florida reefs.”


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University of Miami | Samantha Ballard

“Samantha is a PhD student and marine physicist at the University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science. She received a B.S. in meteorology from Penn State. Her PhD project is called Coastal Land Air Sea Interaction (CLASI) with the goal better understand the small-scale air-sea features in the coastal environment and to improve the Navy's Coupled Ocean Atmosphere Mesoscale Prediction forecast model (COAMPS).”

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oregon state university | Elizabeth Purcell

“Hi! My name is Elizabeth and I am originally from a small barrier island in South Jersey. I am currently studying environmental science with an aquatic biology tract! I am extremely passionate about marine conservation and love all marine life, however, sea turtles are my absolute favorite. I interned at a sea turtle rehabilitation hospital and fell in love. In the future, I plan to pursue a career working with sea turtles! When I am not obsessing over life beneath the waves, I love horseback riding, paddleboarding, free diving, and hiking!”


New York

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Stony Brook University | Charlotte Brennan

“Charlotte Brennan currently studies marine biology on Long Island, New York and does research on marine community ecology over the summer. She's known that she wants to be a marine biologist ever since she started a project on sea monkeys in middle school. In the future, she hopes to pursue a graduate degree abroad and help other young women enter the ever expanding field of ocean science!”

Indiana

Indiana University | Hanna Winston

“Hanna Winston is a senior undergraduate at Indiana University of Bloomington pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Marine Science & Conservation, a minor in Environmental Science, and a certificate in Underwater Resource Management. Her main interest lies in how coastal zone management and ecosystem conservation are connected. She’s currently working on 3D predictive modeling of coral recruitment growth found on mock shipwreck sites in the Dominican Republic, and hopes to continue her studies in grad school.”

CALIFORNIA

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California State University | Kaysha Kenney

“Kaysha Kenney is an undergraduate student at California State University, Fullerton majoring in Biology with a concentration in marine biology. She has an extensive background in intertidal ecology, working as a tidepool educator. She is currently conducing research on the biomass  of filter feeders across oyster and oyster/eelgrass beds in Newport Back Bay, CA. When she's not doing research or spending the day in the tidepools, you can find Kaysha working as a coordinator for the Environmental Sustainability Commission, scuba diving, freediving, volunteering for marine conservation non profits, or doing a beach clean up.” 

CANADA

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DALHousie university | meghyn fountain

“My name is Meghyn Fountain and I am so excited to be a Lead Ambassador for GOS. I’m currently at Dalhousie University working on my Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology. For a long time, I thought I was a mermaid because of my connection with the water. Growing up on an island, the ocean became so important and special to me. Whether I was happy, sad or angry, I always looked to the ocean for that extra comfort. I would love to share my admiration and love for the ocean with others from my home and around the world. I plan on pursuing a career in Marine Mammal Behavior and Aquaculture. I’m very passionate about marine mammals as they are such unique, intelligent and beautiful creatures.”

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University of New Brunswick - Saint John | Jill Corey

"I am Jill Corey, and I am entering my final year of a Marine Biology Degree at UNBSJ! I’ve loved the water from a young age and could often be found swimming, snorkeling and chasing fish in the lake outside my house. During the Summer of 2016 I was accepted to participate in an internship at the Bottlenose Dolphin Research Institute in O’Grove Spain, where I spent my days on a boat collecting valuable data to be used research to better understand the population dynamics. This internship helped me discover my passion for cetaceans (whales). Returning home, I began working for Island Quest Marine, a whale watching service in Saint Andrews, to learn more about and spend more time with the whales. I recently completed a second internship with Humpbacks and High-Rises in Gold Coast Australia, conducting research on humpback whales. After completing my degree my intent is to return to humpbacks and highrises to continue my study with a Masters degree at Griffith University.”

MASSACHUSETTS

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University of Massachusetts Dartmouth | Alanna Mnich

“Alanna Mnich is a marine science PhD student at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth School for Marine Science and Technology. Before beginning her PhD, Alanna completed a bachelor's degree in marine and atmospheric science from the Rosenstiel School for Marine and Atmospheric Science at the University of Miami. Currently, Alanna conducts research through the biogeochemistry lab at her university, where the emphasis is on nitrogen and oxygen isotope tracing. Alanna plans to apply these techniques to fisheries, using biogeochemistry to better understand bluefin tuna larvae from different spawning locations.”

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Boston University | Chloe Brown

Chloe is a marine biologist, science communicator, and SCUBA diver, hoping to make science interdisciplinary again. In her time at Boston University, she has collaborated with research focused on coral morphology and physiology in the face of climate change. She has interned at various organizations around the world from the Roatan Institute for Marine Science in Honduras to SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton’s in Auckland, New Zealand. Chloe is honored to receive the Paul Walker Foundation’s Ocean Leadership Award for her diverse experience in coral restoration, animal care, research, and outreach. Chloe’s work with the Monterey Bay Aquarium has led her on the path of science communication where she hopes to make to make science accessible to all. Chloe is fluent in English and Spanish and hopes to continue to work with locals in Latin America to advocate for protecting the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef.”


Maryland

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University of Maryland | Pravina Hasselbalch

“Pravina is a marine conservationist, freediver, and underwater photographer. She is currently completing her BSc in Ecology and Evolution, while working on her blog to promote sustainable living and spread awareness for marine life. Pravina has spent a month doing coral restoration work in Koh Tao, Thailand, worked in a lab on cavefish, and done countless cleanups around the world. Feeling most at home underwater, she wants to share her love for our oceans with students and communities worldwide.”

MEXICO

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Interdisciplinary centre of marine sciences (CICIMAR-IPN) | kathryn ayres

“Hello my name is Katy, although I am originally from a land-locked village in northern England I have been obsessed with sharks since I can remember! I am now a PhD student at CICIMAR-IPN and National Geographic Explorer studying sharks in Mexico with a NGO called Pelagios Kakunja. For my research I track sharks with acoustic and satellite tags in Cabo Pulmo National Park, one of the world’s most successful marine protected areas. I also monitor shark populations with a drone that I fly weekly along the coastline. I also love scuba-diving, free-diving and (of course) changing people's perceptions about sharks!”

HAWAII

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Brigham Young University | Kendra Nelson

“Hello, I am Kendra Nelson & I’m so honored to be a lead ambassador for GOS. I live in Hawaii & work closely with OneOceanDiving & Conservation. My main areas of study/focus are marine animal behavior, shark & cetacean conservation, & coral restoration. Can’t wait to dominate the marine science field with you ladies!”

Texas

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San Houston State University | Amanda Lofthus

"Amanda is currently a masters student at Sam Houston State University studying shark nursery dynamics. Her thesis research focuses on how predation risk and changing environmental conditions influence habitat use patterns of juvenile bull sharks along the Texas coast. She is passionate about shark research and conservation, and raising awareness of the conservation challenges currently facing elasmobranchs worldwide. Amanda is also an avid scuba diver, and helped with several coral restoration projects before beginning her master's degree. When she is not working on her thesis, you can find her diving, hiking, or training her two border collies"


 
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Europe


United Kingdom

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University of Liverpool | Nina Rivans

“I am currently studying a BSc in Environmental Science specializing in marine sciences in England. I’ve always been fascinated by the ocean and the life it supports, so being able to study and hopefully work in the marine sector in the future is a dream. I am passionate about looking after the planet and our oceans, and I want to encourage others to do the same.”

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Newcastle University | Robin Kaur

“Hello! My name is Robin, I'm 24 years old and I have almost finished my second year of university, studying Marine Biology at Newcastle University. I aim to specialize in aquaculture and fisheries, and complete a PhD in the future.”

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University of Manchester | Jennifer Thomson

“I am a final year Zoology (with Chinese!) student at the University of Manchester UK, working in the Shiels Lab studying the cardiac health/longevity of the Greenland shark. My research interests include extreme marine physiology, conservation, and scientific communication.  My studies have taken me on many trips - from Costa Rica to study tree frogs, to Namibia to study African wild dogs. I became interested in marine conservation in the most unusual of circumstances! I obtained my PADI AOW in Thailand volunteering as a coral reef marine intern.This year I have become a BSAC SD, and am planning a summer divemaster internship in the Marine Action Research (Zavora) lab in Mozambique, hopefully studying everything from nudibranchs to whale sharks! I am also excited to start my masters in Marine Ecosystems Management at the University of St Andrews, Scotland, this coming September!” 

University of Aberdeen | Fern Harvey

“I’m an undergraduate marine biology student at University of Aberdeen, Scotland, with one more year to finish. I have an interest in coral reefs and marine biodiversity, which I hope to become more specialised in through experience and a postgrad in international marine biology. I’m currently spending two months in Haiti, collecting data for my individual research project on: the potential influence of beach characteristics on the nest site selection of turtles in South of Haiti- a first assessment! Whilst being here I have also organised beach clean ups, helped with a project tagging sharks, and have helped educating marine conservation to the local community. I am an advanced open water scuba diver, first qualified through BSAC before switching to PADI. Hoping to become a dive master in the near future. I am a marine mammal medic and am on call out to Marine mammal emergencies and strandings in the north east coast of Scotland. I volunteer with RSPB and WDC doing shore watch surveys on cetacean sightings. I have always inspired to become a marine biologist, growing up with my dad working as a diver and fisherman. I wish to work on the field abroad, possibly keep a focus in the Caribbean.”

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Bangor University | Thea Moule

“Currently a BSc Marine Biology student, PADI dive instructor and a volunteer research assistant. Prior to studying I was a keen traveler who worked on live aboard dive boats on the Great Barrier Reef alongside volunteering at the Cairns Turtle Rehabilitation Centre. I then transferred to dive vessels that chartered to Guadalupe Island and the Archipelago Revillagigedo off the coast of Baja California. All these experiences have exposed me to a wide variety of marine habitats and current threats imposed on marine life.”

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Bangor University | Victoria Chinery

“Victoria Chinery is a postgraduate student at Bangor University. After completing her undergraduate in Marine Biology and Zoology with International Experience at Bangor University and The University of West Florida she has decided to continue her studies and undertake an MSc in Marine Environmental Protection. She is passionate about coral disease research and increasing worldwide awareness of anthropogenic impacts.”

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Plymouth University | Frances Atienza Benstong

“Hi everyone, I’m Frances, from the beautiful Seychelles islands.  I am currently studying Ocean Science and Marine Conservation at Plymouth University. Growing up on the islands I have been in love with the ocean, I believe that education is key to a better future and so is raising awareness about the ocean’s importance. In summer 2018 I got the opportunity to travel from Europe to America on a cruise ship participating in an amazing program for islander called ‘Ocean and Climate Youth ambassador Program’ with Peace Boat. I also interned with an organisation called WiseOceans in Seychelles. I love diving, and always want to learn more about the ocean.”

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University of St. Andrews | Cher Chow

"I’m Cher, a conservation ecologist, photographer, artist, STEAM advocate, and current masters student at the University of St. Andrews studying marine ecosystem management. I completed my BSc in Biology with a minor in Art in the Boston area. Since then, I have been working as a research assistant and scientific diver in my home city of Hong Kong. I’m also really grateful to have worked in both terrestrial and marine ecology in the far north of Australia, Seychelles, and Indonesia. In the lab, I am your person to pick an argument over fish morphology ID, data paywalls, and survey designs. My current research interests are in secondary succession in coral reefs and the population dynamics of moray eels in predator-depleted communities. When I’m not in the lab or the water, I’m most likely climbing, making coffee, shooting film, cooking, or working on web design.”

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Plymouth University | Jess Miller

“Hi my name is Jess, I was born in Australia, I have lived in Malaysia and I am now studying Marine Biology at Plymouth University in the United Kingdom. Growing up by the sea I have always had a passion for everything ocean based. I first started scuba diving when I was 12 years old, and have been crazy about diving ever since. I am going to South East Asia for over a year to embark on various conservation scientific internships and my Divemaster training. I would love to work in marine conservation, where I can teach and inspire like-minded people the importance of the preservation of our oceans.”

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Heriot-Watt University | Marta Maria Cecchetto

“Marta fell in love with the ocean when still a kid following her dad diving around Italy. Graduated with honours in Marine Science at the Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS), she is now completing her PhD in Marine Biology at Heriot-Watt University in Scotland. Beyond the ocean, Marta loves spending time outdoors, hiking, climbing or cycling.”

GERMANY

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University of Kiel | Syrmalenia Kotronaki

“I am a 27- year old marine biologist, specialized in population genetics of the Deep Sea, and SCUBA diver. I am currently completing my M.Sc. degree in Biological Oceanography at GEOMAR, Kiel, Germany, where I also work as a research assistant. Having grown up in Greece, I' ve always known the profession I wanted to follow. Ocean is my passion, travelling around the world is my dream, marine life protection is my goal. Beyond the ocean science, I am crazy about water sports, crossfit, minimalism, dogs and.... chocolate.”

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University of Manchester | Sushmita Ragha

“I’m heading into the final year of my Zoology degree at the University of Manchester, UK. Currently, I’m an intern at the Shiels Laboratory, studying the effects of hypoxia and temperature on the metabolism and anti-predator freeze response of Small spotted catshark embryos. My interests within the realm of marine biology research include marine mammal science, deep sea animal physiology and conservation. As part of my degree, I have been lucky enough to carry out field studies in different parts of the world. I have studied bird biodiversity and species richness in South Africa. I have also studied the effects of substrate depth and size on the species abundance of blackfly larvae in the Carnic Alps of Italy. I achieved my PADI Open Water certification in Akumal, Mexico where I was volunteering as a research assistant on a coral reef ecology project. I’m planning to do a summer internship at an aquarium next year to get some experience in aquatic animal husbandry as well as to further my knowledge and understanding of captive animal welfare. I’m also hoping to continue my studies by doing a masters in marine mammal science/marine biology after my final year as an undergraduate.”

 
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Australia

Oceania


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University of Queensland | Renae Banfield

“Renae has always been passionate about marine life particularly dolphins which is what inspired her to pursue a career in marine biology. Renae is almost finished with her Bachelor of Marine Biology and after graduating she is hoping to progress to a career in animal welfare with a focus on rescue and rehabilitation for injured marine life.”

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Macquarie University | Lorin Lambert

“Lorin's passion for the ocean sparked to life when she was just 10 years old after her parents took her to the Great Barrier Reef. It was there and then she decided, that when she was older she needed to become a marine biologist! This ambition was further fueled having spent time living in Guam, giving Lorin the opportunity to explore some of the most pristine reefs in the world including Palau and various other Micronesian islands. Currently, she is completing her undergraduate studies through a Bachelor of Marine Science, whilst immersing herself in various volunteering opportunities within university & her local community. Some of these ventures include working on the Living Sea Walls project in Sydney, Australia, and completing field work researching the diversity of algae along the reef flats of Heron Island further north in Queensland. Lorin has been thrilled to be given the opportunity to help empower all the strong, passionate and knowledgeable women around her, aiming to create a tight-knit network of like-minded individuals!”

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University of Melbourne | Kri McNamara

“My name is Kri and I grew up in South-East Queensland, Australia. I completed my undergraduate studies in Biomedical Science whilst volunteering for marine conservation within Australia and its surrounds, when I realised this is where my heart lies. My work in these areas have brought up significant barriers in gender and culture that I’m excited to explore. I’ve been heavily involved with turtle conservation and significantly opposed to the introduction of new coal mines close to the Great Barrier Reef. Its not surprising how closely related these two are! Now I’m studying my Masters at the University of Melbourne and I hope to inspire and motivate OBLs (ocean boss ladies) along the way. “

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University of Wollongong | Nicola Kennedy

“I've grown up on the beach and have always felt a responsibility to help protect the ocean. I love getting involved in the field and have participated in turtle conservation volunteering programs in Queensland as well as volunteering locally with ORRCA to monitor marine mammals in the Winter. I am currently studying a Bachelor of Conservation Biology at the University of Wollongong. Honours is a part of my degree and I hope to do a project which helps to conserve an endangered marine species.”

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James cook university | Aliya siddiqi

“After finishing my Bachelor’s degree in animal science in my native state of Ohio, I took part in a seven-month staff/science officer position with a marine conservation NGO in Negros, Philippines. It allowed me to expand my scuba diving skills and work directly with the local communities. I then completed my DM course in Raja Ampat that helped remind me of all that is still worth fighting for in our oceans. I am now studying for my Master’s in marine biology at James Cook University with prominent marine biologists as lecturers and the largest reef in existence in our backyard. I hope to study elasmobranch conservation with the consideration of social science and scientific communication. I absolutely love fieldwork and the island life. Nothing is more calming to my soul than being in and around the sea.”

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James cook university | bailey jo curtis

“Hi! I'm Bailey Jo Curtis and I study marine biology as an undergraduate at James Cook University in Townsville, Australia. I am originally from Missouri in the United States but transferred to JCU after a 6-month study abroad program in 2017. I decided to become a marine biologist after a short 3 week trip to the beautiful British Virgin Islands when I was 17, ever since then I've been obsessed with the ocean. After graduation I am hoping to use my degree towards the conservation of elasmobranchs and cetaceans and teaching younger generations how important conservation is to our environment.”

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Macquarie University | INDI STUART

“Indi is a third-year biology undergraduate with a hope to continue her studies as a masters student in marine science and management. Growing up on boats and on the water, her love for the ocean was sparked at a young age and continues today. This love has been heightened throughout her degree, with a particular interest in the effects of climate change on the marine ecosystem and therefore strives to incorporate this into marine and coastal management within her future career. She hopes to help mitigate anthropogenic effects on the oceans and be an ambassador for environmental health.”

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South Africa

Africa


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University of the Western Cape | Calley Chateau

“An aspiring marine biologist obtaining my masters degree in Marine Biology and Biodiversity and Conservation Biology, with a Class IV Commercial divers license. Over the years I have become an avid shark enthusiast and am passionate about changing people's perception of sharks through education and entertainment. I particularly enjoy collaborating with others from an array of fields to develop new ideas and solve new challenges to better our understanding of the environment.”

University of Stellenbosch, South Africa | Sasha Dines

“Sasha is a Marine Biologist and Dive Master from the UK, but has been managing a research internship in South Africa for the past few years, working with great white sharks and cetaceans. Alongside this she works with local organisations to manage the regional marine mammal stranding network. Later this year Sasha will be leaving the white sharks to start her PhD in cetacean bioacoustics at The University of Stellenbosch, Cape Town. One of her passions though has been to encourage young women to pursue careers and leadership roles in STEM. Over the past few years she’s been a mentor for young female scientists and wants to continue being a role model, hence her enthusiasm for organisations such as GOS!”

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University of Cape Town | Jess Stow

I took to water from a young age, waterskiing on weekends and swimming in school, until eventually I was old enough to start scuba diving. I loved the ocean but felt restricted by cylinders and BCDs. My dad introduced me to freediving when I was 15 - it very quickly stole my heart. There is something so comforting about the silence that surrounds you when you are underwater, to almost feel part of the ocean for just a minute at a time. Freediving has taught me to love and respect the ocean, sea life and environment and is the reason I am studying marine biology and conservation.

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University of Cape Town | Danel Wentzel

“I fell in love with the ocean through Scuba diving with my family. The mysterious world of the ocean has always fascinated me and inspired me to become a marine biologist. My favorite thing to do is share the magic of the ocean with others and bring joy to their hearts, especially those of kids. I’ve been volunteering for the @saveourseasfoundation @sharkcentre, @sea_the_bigger_picture and working with @iamwater_foundation to get kids excited about the ocean. I believe education is the most important element to ensure the future of our oceans, people don't protect what they don’t understand! "

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Asia


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University of Hong Kong | Jay Minuti

"I’m born & bred in the UK & now doing my PhD in Marine Biology at the University of Hong Kong. I am passionate about climate change & extreme weather impacts on nature. For my PhD I am researching the impact of ocean acidification, ocean warming and heatwaves on marine invertebrates & want to continue working on impacts of & adaptation to extreme weather events. Science communication & education is key for women’s empowerment, so I’m super excited to join the GOS team as a Lead Ambassador!"

 

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