One of the highlights of working with BV as a science fellow was learning the necessary areas of science that the romantics forget. BV is on the cutting edge of holistic area science, incorporating social and physical sciences into the various LMMA programmes. BV breaks down the silos of academic theory – a necessary approach in the unpredictable reality of real-world conservation. I remember understanding through this work on a visceral level that real lasting conservation is as much about communication as it is about pure research.
In the London office I was tasked with helping field teams solve the many challenges they encountered on a daily basis. Assisting in the running of remote field stations, managing equipment logistics, writing science reports, recruiting and managing volunteer needs, and updating websites. It is these practical management skills that have served me most in my subsequent career.
When I wake up in the morning and go to work as a marine data analyst with the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Marine Protected Areas center, I regularly think back to where my journey started, and realise I can draw a direct line from the skills I developed as a Blue Ventures research fellow to those I employ today.