Sarah, Marti and the Gulf Stream

July 27, 2010

Lat/Lon: 39 ° 23.1690 N/067 ° 00.7036 W
Air Temp: 24.3*C /75.74*F
Wind Speed: 8.89 kts
Humidity: 57.7%
Water Temp: 26.81*C /80.25*F
Salinity: 34.51 psu
Depth: 4138 m /4.1 km /2.57 miles

WOW! Check out that water temp! Anyone care to guess what current we're running?

Today we are seamount hopping, trying to locate the best spot for mud. So today seems like a great day to introduce you to some of our amazing science team members! Meet Marti Jeglinski and Sarah Schulenberg

Sarah Schulenberg, Graduate Student UNH

I stumbled into paleoceanography/paleoclimatology, to be honest. I earned a Bachelor’s degree in chemistry at a small state university and began to realize towards the end of that track that I wasn’t entirely sure what I wanted to do. I had begun to hear about graduate school from professors and teaching assistants. It sounded like a good deal: they pay your tuition and fees and pay you a stipend to teach or do research, all while earning a degree that may earn you more money in the end. At least that is how it translated into my mind.

Around the same time, I had learned about a melding of disciplines known as geochemistry. I began the search for graduate programs in geochemistry, not knowing that was about as ambiguous as saying a degree in chemistry.

I ended up being accepted into the graduate program in the Jackson School of Geosciences at The University of Texas at Austin. I was put under the advisement of a faculty member interested in hydrogeology and geomicrobiology.

I was not enjoying my course work or the possible avenues of research that were being talked about for me. I decided to visit some of the other faculty in the department and find out about their research. I found a faculty member who was interested in paleoceanography and paleoclimatology. When I told her I was not a geologist, she caught me with a line that I remember still, “Oh, I never consider myself a geologist. If I had to classify myself, I would say oceanographer or chemist.” I switched advisors and began to enjoy my courses so much so that I switched from pursuing a Master’s degree to the PhD track.

I am not always convinced that I will be able “to hack it” but I am doing my best to enjoy the education I am receiving. I am also continually meeting people that help me to understand what I am now or may be capable of. I have since followed my advisor from Texas to the University of New Hampshire because I wanted to continue to work under her as I pursue my PhD.

In the fall of 2009, my advisor received an email from her former PhD advisor that extra hands were needed on a marine sediment cruise in the beginning of 2010. I immediately agreed not only due to my lack of field experience but also for the chance to experience the open ocean. A free trip to Bridgetown, Barbados was a nice perk as well.

While out at sea, I threw myself in wholeheartedly, jumping in where- and whenever needed. I wanted to learn and absorb as much as possible. Apparently, I made an impression because they asked me to come back out with them on this leg. It is certainly not all roses and sunshine everyday while out at sea but the work is satisfying to me. So few people see this side of science, the dirty side. A lot of grunt work goes into publishing those pretty, glossy scientific papers and I feel beyond grateful that I have been given the opportunity to experience it.


Marti Jeglinski, Research Assistant WHOI

Have you been to the Azores or Barbados or the Santa Barbara Basin? How about Bahamas, Panama Canal, Bermuda Rise or the Florida Straits? Perhaps Senegal or Iceland - all by ship? It’s time you meet Marti Jeglinski.

Cape Cod born Marti Jeglinski graduated from Salem State with a degree in Earth Sciences in 1977 and was hired by the United States Geological Survey back on the Cape. By 1979 Marti was hired by Charlie Hollister (yes the same one after whom the long core was named!) as a research assistant at WHOI. It was the start of career in scienc

e technology and research at WHOI spanning more than 30 years and still going. In the course of her career Marti married a Merchant Marine Chief Engineer Jim Jeglinski and had two sons who are now in their 20s. Her husband was at sea 6 months a year which made for quite a juggling act.

Marti’s interest in the sciences was piqued by a geology professor at Salem State. It was enough to pull her from her Education degree program and she hasn’t looked back since. At USGS and WHOI Marti worked with researchers in paleoclimate, physical oceanography and hard rock marine geology. She has run the mass spectrometer lab, maintained a benthic foraminifera culture lab, constructed and tested floats for physical oceanography studies, worked on mapping of the Kane Fracture Zone, an analyzed cores for forams.

Last year Marti was the recipient of the Linda Morse Porteous Award. I thought that it would be great for you to hear some of the remarks that were written by Marti’s colleagues and shared at the awards night.

“Even after long, hard hours of deck work you can count on her irrepressible spirit to

pick you up and get you through whatever challenge confronts you... she works tirelessly,

looking after everyone, cares passionately about getting all the goals of the cruise done

and done well, and does so with grace and a big smile on her face. As I have always said,

‘I want her in my lifeboat.’ ”

“From laboratory work, tedious at times, to production work, she has made modifications

to equipment, designed tools and fixtures for tasks that have been performed inefficiently

for years. She would tell me, ‘Just because it has always been done like this doesn’t mean

it’s the best way to do it.’ For instance, when she was working in the Float Group there

was a procedure of stretching a rubber bladder and wrestling it onto a pressure case. This

procedure requires tremendous physical strength... after she successfully installed a few

bladders she designed a tool to stretch these. A task that was once dreaded became so

simple that anyone could do it and it doubled the daily output.”

“She always finds the positive side of a difficult situation or person. She always finds

time for those in need, expecting nothing in return. She makes us all comfortable and at

ease in a difficult work environment.”

“She effectively conveys seemingly complicated and complex scientific notions, even to

those without a scientific background. Once while box coring in rough seas, the marine

technicians from Scripps did not understand the importance of recovering deep-sea

sediment samples in stratigraphic order. She used an analogy of ripping pages out of a

book, mixing them up, and then trying to interpret them. They immediately understood

and for the remainder of the trip the technicians were cautious when recovering material.”

When describing experiences with being out to sea with the awardee, one nominator said,

“She’s there for you when you cut yourself, she has remedies for just about whatever is

ailing you, and she will laugh along with you during the most trying times.”

Pretty amazing women, wouldn't you agree?

No comments:

Post a Comment