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SEA Currents Blog

SEA Currents: Nov 2014


November 26, 2014

How to Make a Ship Look Really, Really, Really Good

Nina Whittaker, C Watch, Kenyon College

The Global Ocean: New Zealand

We mustered on the quarter deck at 0800 this morning to see Queen’s Wharf in the bright sunlight. People were milling around (and inexplicably commuting to work in full suits on scooters), looking at the boat with great interest. Feeling self-conscious, the crew of the Robert C. Seamans sprang into action for an extreme makeover like no other. The two more worn sails (the mains’l and the mainstays’l) were taken down to be repaired/replaced, and the other sails were furled tightly, with the seams folded into cascades of precise white waves. Our watch ventured aloft, climbing up the foremast to furl and tuck the squares’ls.


November 25, 2014

SEA Semester Undergraduates Utilize Ocean Health Index to Investigate Climate Change & Conservation

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For Immediate Release: October 30, 2014


Woods Hole, MA— This fall, undergraduate students from top colleges and universities nationwide are utilizing the newly created Ocean Health Index to explore environmental issues related to climate change, conservation, and sustainability of the world’s oceans in a groundbreaking new study abroad program offered by Sea Education Association. SEA Semester: The Global Ocean, is the first undergraduate program in the world to incorporate metrics of the Ocean Health Index – a comprehensive, global evaluation of the human impact on the world’s oceans – into curriculum. Following a highly selective application process, these forty-four students are spending six weeks on shore at SEA Semester’s campus in Woods Hole, Massachusetts and six weeks at sea, sailing as crew and scientists onboard SEA Semester’s state-of-the-art ocean research vessels, operating in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.


November 25, 2014

The Way to Windy Wellington

Laina Gray, A Watch, Canisius College

The Global Ocean: New Zealand

The way to Wellington was not a steady sail, but the day began as all important days do. C Watch came on deck for the 0700 to 1300 watch, greeted by the morning sun driving away the cloud cover and fog banks. But as the cliché goes, it was the calm before the storm. What began as a day beautiful enough for a carousel and Neuston tow quickly became a wet, rolling passage through the eastern side of Cook Strait (the waters that divide New Zealand’s North and South Islands).


November 25, 2014

Sleep at own risk: excitement abounds

Chris Bunn, A watch, Colorado College

Colonization to Conservation in the Caribbean

“Ugh,” I thought to myself as I was gently woken for watch at the civilized hour of 2300.  Yes, I’ll admit it, there are times aboard this beautiful vessel where I do not spring lightly from my bed, struggling to contain my enthusiasm for watch.  For this particular watch though, I was mistaken. This was not your average evening-watch, plodding along with little to do. No, this was mid-watch: home of the midnight Neuston Tow. Now dear reader you might be wondering, “What is so special about another Neuston Tow?”


November 24, 2014

Wholeness

Megan Lubetkin, B-Watch, Bates College

Colonization to Conservation in the Caribbean

The concept of experiential learning is one that many schools, universities, and programs preach to prospective students. It’s easy for me to say that this first week spent at sea on the Cramer has been far more than just a typical ‘experiential learning’ program-this has been one of the most rewarding and whole experiences of my life (while aboard a tall ship crossing the Atlantic it’s hard for it not to be).


November 24, 2014

Mung is Thwarted, B-Watch Prevails!

Chris Marshall, B Watch, SUNY School of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF)

The Global Ocean: New Zealand

Thus far we’ve enjoyed six full days of life on New Zealand’s oceans. I think my peers and I have reached a consensus that we feel like those six days have felt like two weeks. Having a watch rotation each day has been incredibly different from the normal 9-5 day that most of us are used to. Each time we stand watch it seems that we have begun a new day, which is all sorts of bizarre. However, we are all becoming accustomed to this new lifestyle one way or another.


November 23, 2014

The Mothership

Tanner Tillotson, Assistant Engineer

Colonization to Conservation in the Caribbean

Corwith Cramer is stately as she moves through the water.  With many ships, this might be a euphemism for “sluggish” but not so here.  When on the helm, she responds to a turn of the wheel after a thoughtful pause, like a patient teacher giving a student a moment to reconsider their answer.  When the wind comes up, she’ll pick up speed with equal gravitas, accelerating smoothly rather than lurching out of the gate.  The first time I was told we were making over ten knots, I was amazed, because I never would have guessed.


November 23, 2014

All’s Swell

Allisa Dalpe, B Watch, Connecticut College

The Global Ocean: New Zealand

Bright and early this morning, around 0700, my B Watch counterparts and I found ourselves on the bowsprit bouncing up and down in the heavy swells. That’s one way to wake up quickly. After striking the jib because the windy conditions overnight had calmed down, the four of us made our way onto the netting around the bowsprit (clipped in of course; don’t worry parents) to furl the sail, or in other words, tie it down so it would be safely stowed.


November 22, 2014

Just your typical day at sea!

Zachary Godfrey, B Watch, Rhodes College

Colonization to Conservation in the Caribbean

Today started early for me when I was roused to prepare for dawn watch at 0230. After getting my headlamp, knife, water bottle, and harness I made my way up to the lab where I would be stationed for the next four hours.  The watch before ours left us a little surprise: their Neuston tow yielded over 350 mL of zooplankton! There was a pint jar full of euphasiids (aka krill) and our 100-count observation was the easiest to date considering euphausids are easy to identify given their large size (for zooplankton) at just under a centimeter in length.


November 22, 2014

I Get By With a Little Salp From My Friends

Kella Woodard, B Watch, UMass Amherst

The Global Ocean: New Zealand

Dear Mom & Dad,
When you pick me up at the airport, just look for the red, shriveled lobster.  There is not enough sunblock in the world to keep me from burning. Please send help. 
Love, Kella

But really, today was a great day.


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