From a very young age I knew that I wanted my future to involve the ocean, whether it be studying it, playing in it, or just living near it. In 2010, I graduated from the University of California Santa Cruz with a B.S. in Marine Biology. I spent the next year volunteering as a guide for the Monterey Bay Aquarium, in an aquaponics greenhouse, and in the Ichthyology Lab at MLML. After this, I began to work for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife as a Scientific Aide for the California Recreational Fisheries Study project. For this project I interview sport anglers and collect hatchery tagged salmon heads (much to the anglers’ chagrin when they discover they cannot take their salmon heads home). Through my volunteering at MLML, I discovered more about its community, projects, degree intensity, and focus on field research. Because all of these aspects appealed to me, I applied to MLML and started my studies in the fall of 2013. I am interested in deep sea ecology and the extremophiles that make up hydrothermal vent and whale fall communities.