The weather in the Bering Sea has again taken a turn for the worse. 35 knot winds and high seas make it difficult to conduct science operations. The Night Watch managed to conduct 2 stations before they had to scrub Station 125. The last station on our watch, prior to the most recent storm, was an “all girls” station. MST Liz, Kristina, Celia, Donna and myself deployed the ring net and bongo nets. MST Shannon operated the winch while Dr. Ashjian and Dr. Longnecker conducted the CTD cast. It took us a little longer than normal – Kristina fastened Liz's glove in a book clamp during deployment of the ring net. Good thing it wasn't too cold outside!
The “all girls station” netted a great krill catch. The krill were very large, much larger than we had been seeing. We also caught a very large shrimp in the Bongo net. Since he was very obviously NOT zooplankton, we set him free!
In today's journal, I have the pleasure of introducing you to the Captain of the Healy, CAPT Beverly Havlik. She grew up in Iowa and received a BA in Management/Human Resources from the University of Northern Iowa. After working at several different jobs, she learned about the Coast Guard and applied for, and was accepted to, Officer Candidate School. After 17 weeks of training, she graduated and received a commission as an Ensign. CAPT Havlik entered the Coast Guard intending to stay for 3-5 years to gain job experience and make me a better candidate for positions in the business world. After her initial 3 year contractual obligation, she decided she would stay with the Coast Guard until it was no longer interesting. She was repeatedly assigned to challenging positions with increased responsibilities and, after 25 years, she still finds the Coast Guard interesting - She's had a great career!
CAPT Havlik has many memories from her various assignments - interdicting migrant and drug smuggling vessels at sea, breaking ice on the Great Lakes and the Arctic, living, working, and making life-long friends in Hawaii, California, Virginia, Florida, North Carolina, Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Washington. One of the most memorable things she has done was travel from Hawaii to McMurdo Station, Antarctica, via New Zealand, to spend 12 days aboard the Coast Guard Cutter POLAR SEA to learn polar icebreaking before reporting to the ship as the Executive Officer. The sights were surreal. The wildlife (whales, penguins, seals, birds) was like none she had ever seen. There was an active volcano, Mt Erebus, steaming in the distance and huge icebergs drifting about. She saw no plant life, only rocky, moon-like terrain. It was daylight 24x7. She was awestruck!
It is not unusual, in the Coast Guard, for a woman to command a ship. One of the aspects that attracted CAPT Havlik to the Coast Guard was that there are not many assignment restrictions for women. At this time, there aren't many senior women officers and few have the requisite experience and training to command HEALY. But, that is changing as the number of women officers increases. Onboard HEALY, there are currently have 19 women (7 officers, 12 enlisted) and 72 men (11 officers, 61 enlisted) assigned.
CAPT Havlik advises anyone who is interested in joining the Coast Guard, or embarking on any endeavor in life, to study hard in all subjects and the arts, be resilient and undeterred by setbacks, and keep your mind open to new opportunities you may not have known or considered. It's a big world with lots to offer those with ambition and courage to accept the challenges. To learn more about the Coast Guard's various officer and enlisted accession programs, go to www.gocoastguard.com or visit your local Recruiter's Officer.
Today, I leave you with a Bering Sea picture and our Icebreaker Healy not breaking ice, but cutting through 17-20 foot waves...the sheer power of nature astounds me.
Question of the Day
Using yesterday's journal information, identify the following Calanus glacialis copepod as a male, female or juvenile C5. Explain your reasoning.
Stay tuned as we continue our exciting voyage on the USCG Cutter Healy. Until then...
“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” - Mohandas Gandhi