Many of you have had a chance to spend some research time with our resident scientist, Ms. Jessica. Here is some more information about our favorite marine scientist!
Miss Jessica, I have seen you at Charles Ellis, and I am wondering what you do here.
Hello! My name is Miss Jessica. I am extremely excited to return to Charles Ellis Montessori Academy to work with Mr. Trent as the 6th grade resident scientist. My position at the school is supported by the National Science Foundation GK12 Ocean Literacy program. By working in the classroom I am better able to communicate my experiences and expertise as a marine scientist.
What kind of work can you do if you’re passionate about science and conservation?
Before graduate school I worked in outdoor and environmental education in New Hampshire, Michigan, California, and New Zealand. As a biologist I have assisted with research on poison dart frogs, sea turtles, whales, dolphins, and manatees in Central America and Mexico. I also spent a few years working to mitigate the impact of dredging on manatees, whales and sea turtles along the Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico and in Puerto Rico as a marine endangered species observer.
How did you get to Savannah?
In 2009, I came to Georgia to work in rescue and rehabilitation at the Georgia Sea Turtle Center. I later was able to work on Ossabaw Island collecting data on sea turtles for the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. I moved to Savannah in 2013, and became a candidate for a Master of Marine Science at Savannah State University. I am currently conducting research on the population dynamics of common bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus of the Savannah River Estuary.
What is your favorite animal?
If you spend a little time with me you will find that I have a lot of favorites. I love baby sea turtles and tortoises, like gopher tortoises (the GA state reptile).
Do you have any advice for students wanting to become a scientist?
Boys and girls, follow your passion! As a scientist you can work around the world, find cures for the “incurable” diseases, bring sustainable practices to your community, or discover new species at the ocean depth. Scientists, mathematicians, and engineers are great problem solvers, and the world needs you. It can be a lot of hard work, but you are learning the tools at Charles Ellis Montessori to become successful in any field. Don’t shy away from challenges. Embrace them, and you will see your dreams come true.
Ms. Jessica in Action!