A Series of Science Firsts

By: Stacy Calhoun, PhD Student (UL Lafayette)

March 25, 2018

This cruise was a series of firsts for me.  It was my first ever research cruise, my first field work as a PhD student at UL Lafayette, and my first time spending more than just a day out on the Gulf.  The experience has been one to remember.  I went from only hearing about the MOCNESS system, to drawing up flight plans and flying the “MOC” myself.  I’ve sieved what, at times, seemed like countless samples of zooplankton, all while trying to keep balanced on a rocking ship.  I came across the most adorable larval puffer fish, which looked like a tiny transparent basketball with eyes.  I’m a firm believer in learning through doing, and I have learned so much by participating on this cruise.  Through the exhaustion, hard work, and small bouts of seasickness, I’ve had a blast.  I’m glad to be headed home, but I’m looking forward to my next opportunity to get out on the water.

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