|Students at Sea|
Masako Tominaga logged nearly a year at sea (~295 days) during her graduate studies in Oceanography, participating in seven research cruises including three IODP expeditions. On a cruise to the Indian Ocean in 2007, she spent nearly two months onboard ship studying the Ninetyeast Ridge with her graduate advisor, Professor Will Sager, and five fellow graduate students. (Photo right - the bow of the JOIDES Resolution scientific ocean drilling ship)
Chris Paul went on the Sea90e cruise in the Indian Ocean to add to his experience aboard research vessels and to help collect data for his dissertation. During the cruise, Paul was in charge of collecting multi-beam data to generate high-resolution maps of the Ninetyeast Ridge and surrounding seafloor.
“Even though we aren’t on the coast, I’ve gotten more sea time than most students who are, and it has helped me expand my research topics.” Ph.D. student Ruth Mullins.
(Photo left - Amy Wagner with Associate Professor Alejandro Orsi in front of an ice breaker in Antarctica.)
Ph.D. student Julia O’Hern loves doing field work at sea. She has been on 13 research cruises – several in the Gulf of Mexico and the Galápagos, and one in Antarctica. She has logged over 120 days at sea. For a list of her field work and some of her photographs, see One Student's Story.
Erin Weaver and Marie Herbort helped run over 200 geophysical survey lines (sidescan, CHIRP seismic subbottom profiler, and single beam bathymetry) in Copano Bay, Texas, for two straight months in the summer of 2007 to create a seabed and oyster reef map of the bay.
Hands On Research and Life at Sea
Many Oceanography graduate students experience life at sea and hands-on research in the Galápagos Islands – one of the most biodiverse areas of the world – through a unique agreement between the college and the Oceanographic Institute of the Ecuadorian Navy (Instituto Oceanográfico de la Armada or INOCAR). Fall semester 2008, ten students spent three weeks cruising across the equator with scientists and students from Chili, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela. Students also participated in INOCAR research cruises in the summer of 2007 and spring of 2009, with more collaborative research cruises being planned.
Through a study of the mechanisms controlling hypoxia under PI Steve DiMarco, more than 35 A&M graduate students have participated in 13 research cruises in the Gulf, logging over 1,000 student days at sea. The work has led to collaborative studies of hypoxia in other regions of the world, specifically the Yangtze and Huanghe (Yellow) rivers in China.