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Student Stories

Evan Oleson

Evan Oleson

SEA Semester Class:

C-231 (Ocean Exploration)


Williams College


Economics Major & Concentrations in Leadership and Legal Studies

SEA Semester Research Focus:

Scientific Research - Gulf Stream Imagery

Why did you choose SEA Semester?

I have always had a love for the ocean and sailing and was interested in doing something different for my study abroad experience. SEA Semester fulfilled both those desires and allowed me to learn so much more about the marine environment than I would have in any other academic environment.

What were the strongest aspects of SEA Semester?

SEA Semester was the perfect environment to learn about a vastly important but often overlooked part of our world, the oceans. The classroom time was very engaging and I learned a great deal in this more traditional academic environment. Of course, the sea component will probably be the most memorable aspect of my undergraduate education. Not only did I learn a great deal about science and sailing, but also I was able to learn about and reflect on my own interests, desires, and passions. The people and community that makes up SEA Semester is also amazing, I can’t say enough about my shipmates, mates, and scientists. I learned a ton from each and every person.

What were the most challenging aspects of SEA Semester?

SEA Semester was challenging in many ways and at times the various aspects combine for some tough days and learning experiences. I missed home and friends a great deal but also the feeling of having control to do what you want and have a sense of personal freedom. It was actually refreshing to be so devoid of freedom and privacy so that I could reflect on what those things mean to my life outside of SEA Semester.

Words of advice for future SEA Semester students?

Be ready and accepting of all the challenges and enjoy every minute!