SEA Currents: Aug 2015
SEA Semester® in the News:
“Sarah McTague ’18 Joined a Club, Made a Journey”
by Glenn Jochum, Stony Brook University | Aug. 31, 2015
Joining one of the more than 400 student clubs or organizations at Stony Brook can lead to unexpected journeys. For Sarah McTague ’18, membership in the marine science club sent her all the way across the ocean.
Through the club, the Averill Park, New York, marine science major heard about a Sea Education Association program called SEA Semester, which gave her the opportunity to earn four college credits while making a 3,300-nautical-mile transatlantic crossing in a research vessel – all the way from Woods Hole, Massachusetts, to Cork, Ireland.
Our ship is surrounded by a forest of masts. As a popular cruising destination for yachts all across the Mediterranean, Palma de Mallorca has a huge collection of boats of all sizes…many of them larger than the Corwith Cramer! Although we are in the middle of a maintenance period, most of the other yachts in Palma are here for leisure and it has been interesting to see the boats come and go while we make steady progress on our work lists. Often we pause to gape at the huge racing yachts arriving with their exceptionally tall masts. They in turn stare at the Corwith Cramer because we are the only ship in the harbor with square rigged sails and associated yards (yards are what hold the square sails in place).
SEA Semester® in the News:
“Ramos ’16 Studies Oceanography, Marine Policy in Hawaii”
by Lauren Rubenstein, Wesleyan University | Aug. 27, 2015
Q: This summer you did a SEA Semester program, “Aloha ‘Aina: People & Nature in the Hawaiian Islands.” How did you become involved in the program?
A: I learned about the program from another Wesleyan student who had done it a few years ago. As a biology and E&ES double major, it sounded like it was right up my alley! At the time, I was thinking about how I was going to apply my studies—what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. This seemed like a good opportunity to explore new options.
SEA Semester does programs at sea all over the world. This summer just happened to be the trip to Hawaii, and I was very excited to go there! I also didn’t want to miss out on a whole semester on campus at Wesleyan, so this worked out well in that it was just five weeks in the summer.
Ship maintenance is hard work, especially during the heat of August in Spain! Accordingly, our crew burns through some serious calories each day and it is Steward Nick and Assistant Steward Sarah¹s job to replenish the lost energy - and they do an amazing job.
We were able to check off one major item from our maintenance list today: removing the 500kg+ bowsprit from the Corwith Cramer! This was a major challenge that tested the minds of all aboard. Why did the bowsprit even need to come out of the ship?
In the environments that we work in, our awareness of the space around us is shaped by what we use and work with every day. For me, that means that my mental image of the Cramer is one of food. ‘So-and-so’s bunk’ doesn’t mean their bunk, but the secret cache of food that lies underneath. The settees in the main salon are named Flour, Cold Drinks, or Cholula. And the Elephant Table, extending out from the lab top, is home to squash, melons, and other gourds.
SSV Corwith Cramer is in her annual maintenance period in Mallorca, Spain, and so far the crew have wasted no time in tearing the ship apart and getting after some of the projects which will allow this beautiful vessel to have another excellent year voyaging around the Atlantic.
Dear Shore & Co.,
The sun set around 2130 for us on August 14 with an unreal show. Thick layers of cumulus clouds stratified the sky horizon to horizon with a tiny rim of mountains along the southern coast of Spain far to the west. As the sun went behind the clouds, a red glow radiated upward through a low haze above the mountains, striking several different cloud layers and turning them brilliant vermillion while leaving patches of blue-gold sky in between.
Hello from the eastern hemisphere! The Cramer is well on her way to Mallorca, with only a few hours left until we pull into our dock. The past week has been quite the voyage. We have sailed through the Strait of Gibraltar, set every sail in a 24 hour period and even used the emergency tiller for practice. The ship’s company carries a variety of sailing experience in addition to new and old alumni (Eli and Nina from C-261 and Tom from W-26).
From astride the lee yardarm I can see:
Deepest blue streaked with foam beneath my toes
Reaching with each roll as though the water knows
I’ve crossed the edge of safe security.