Oregon…What is this place?

As a native east coast resident of Maryland and having never been to Oregon or the Pacific coast really, I was shocked at what Oregon was like.  When I first arrived it was cold and rainy; while in Maryland it does rain a good bit during the summer, it’s mainly summer showers that come in large thunderstorms compared to a drizzle all day long.  This week I was trained at the Hatfield Marine Science Center with a boat load of things including leading an estuary walk, a presentation about detecting earthquakes and volcanic eruptions and various other things including fishery knowledge and animal husbandry.  All of this information was amazing because I learned so much not only about biology and education, but the Oregon coast as well.

I learned all about the cold upwelling that occurs in the Pacific ocean as well as the axial seamount that is created by the Pacific plate and Juan de Fuca plate spreading.  This axial seamount is an underwater volcano that we don’t worry about with mega thrust earthquakes or tsunamis because it regularly erupts compared to becoming pressurized and then having a mega thrust earthquake and volcanic eruption.  I’ve never been very interested in plate tectonics, earthquakes or volcanoes, but having to do a presentation about them has made me very interested and wonder more about them.  So much technology is being created to detect this events soon especially technologies that are used underwater.  Many challenges come with these technologies like the pressure of the water and the fact that the deep sea is dark.  Challenges have been seen throughout this week such as learning all this new information to start work on Saturday and learning more about the west coast so I can answer guest questions at the Hatfield Marine Science Center.

Next week is going to be a huge challenge because it will be the start of my actual job of leading estaury walks and working in the Marine Science Center.  I feel like I’m ready for some things, but not all since I’m not as familiar with the environment.  Yet, I have high hopes for all of us summer interns and I hope we’ll be able to learn more and more as the summer goes on.  Especially since while doing all of the 40 hour a week work, we also have to do a project and create a plan for it that’s due 2 weeks from now.  My life will certainly be busy to say the least, but i’m up for the challenge.  Playing volleyball, talking to home friends online and just getting to more people here at HMSC has really helped me get into the groove of things.  My hope is that only more fun is to come and that mosquitoes will go down in number.


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