At the Sea Watch Foundation, we do have a number of volunteers working with us while also completing their studies, and we are very proud to support them as they work towards their qualifications and develop successful careers in the marine industry. Our newest volunteers is Ellie Richardson, who is going to assist our Sightings Officer in the running of our Education programme. Here, we catch up with Ellie and find out about her.
My name is Ellie Richardson and I am from Scotland. This year I will be leaving the gloomy weather of my home Edinburgh and travelling SW to join the Sea Watch Foundation (SWF) as their Education and Outreach Assistant. Growing up by the East Coast I am excited to explore and visit Welsh waters for the first time!
As the Education Assistant I am the primary contact for school groups, extra-curricular clubs and other organisations that are interested in outreach. I am hugely passionate about marine conservation, and strongly believe that science education is one of the most important tools in supporting research.
I have previously working at a remote field station that focused on elasmobranch research, but this will be my cetacean debut. Although I have been lucky enough to see dolphins from a far, this is my first taste of marine mammal fieldwork and I am looking forward to understanding more about the species found in Cardigan Bay.
I expect this summer to be a busy and exciting time for both cetacean research and interacting with the general public. As a former summer school teacher, I am especially enthusiastic about meeting pupils in New Quay and learning about Welsh species together. With the world’s current climate status it is more important than ever to engage future generations in joining the sustainability debate. In the hopes of achieving this, I will be hosting activity days, beach clean ups, reading events and more to connect SWF with as wide an audience as possible. Furthermore I will be introducing schools around the UK, either in person or via Skype, to our marine mammal friends. Through these fun events, I will be supporting SWF’s research while promoting public awareness. I look forward to continuing my Sea Watch journey working alongside like-minded and inspiring people. Bring it on!