Day 14 Heading home: Chantelle Cook

By October 9th, 2017

Today brings us to the end of our Educator on Board journey. I have to admit, I’m a little emotional. A shipwreck, hydrochemistry, atmospheric marine chemistry and terrestrial dust, engineering, STEM, collaboration, team work, biology, geology, birds, dolphins, whales, sea turtles, jelly fish, sea snakes, sharks, tuna and flying fish– I don’t want the experience to stop! These have been experiences of a lifetime and will certainly give me many a tale to tell!

I am, however, ready for home, ready to see my family and my friends and my own bed! I’m not sure I could do what some of the guys on Investigator do, and go to sea for up to 60 days at a time. I think two weeks has been the perfect window.

As we now make our way through the familiar colour of the Indian Ocean, bringing me closer to home, I would like to take the opportunity to thank all the people who have made this journey possible for me. I must acknowledge every crew member on board Investigator. From ASP Ship Management to Marine National Facility to CSIRO. Stewards and cooks, to technical support teams, scientists to deck hands. Their collaboration and professionalism is a credit to them and the companies they serve. They have been friendly, professional and dynamic in all of their interactions.

My thanks to CSIRO, for making this project a successful and engaging, hands on, professional learning experience that will reach and inspire the teachers and most importantly, the students of Australia – our future scientists. I would like to acknowledge The Western Australia Department of Education, my school principal, administration and colleagues at Nedlands Primary School for their vast amounts of encouragement and support. And of course, my family, for their unwavering and unconditional help, support and assistance in making this voyage a reality.

Lastly, I would like to thank specifically:

Christian Halverson, for being a great Educator on Board buddy and helping me out with the high school level stuff!

Vicki and Ben from CSIRO, for your project coordination, support and assistance on and off board.

Eric Woehler, for inspiring a biological science-based unit of work for primary school students on sea birds. Thanks for your feedback and for sharing your profound and infinite knowledge on an array of science and grammar topics.

Amy from GSM, for letting me hangout with you all night to find a shipwreck.

Chris, chief engineer, for taking the time to take us over the ship.

To every scientist, engineer and technician who provided us with a workshop or tour and shared your wealth of knowledge – thank you so much!

I have quite literally learnt more about STEM in the last week on board than I ever could have imagined possible and had a blast along the way.

Signing off, over and out – Chantelle Cook, Educator on Board IN2017_T01