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USM Scientist Selected to Join E/V Nautilus for Fellowship Program

Tue, 02/26/2019 - 01:36pm | By: James Skrmetta

The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) Scientist Danielle Bailey was recently selected to join the 2019 Ocean Exploration Trust's (OET) Science Communication Fellowship Program.

The Ocean Exploration Trust's Science Communication Fellowship Program works to immerse educators in the Nautilus Corps of Exploration and encourages them to bring ocean exploration to a global audience. 

“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to be aboard the E/V Nautilus and in the control room to further understand the science, engineering and planning involved in science explorations,” said Bailey. “I am looking forward to learning more about deep-sea exploration as well as how to best translate that to the public.”

Scientists, engineers, crew, and communicators aboard the E/V Nautilus will explore and share science, vessel operations, and daily life with audiences through a live video stream.

Bailey, 28, works as a marine educator at USM's Marine Education Center (MEC) where she is responsible for creating and conducting lessons to educate participants on marine life and coastal ecosystems to help inspire the next generation of scientists. She received her bachelor's degree in marine biology at Roger Williams University before continuing her education and attaining a master's degree in coastal sciences from USM's Gulf Coast Research Laboratory.

Through participation in live interactions with student groups and public audiences, the fellowship participants are tasked with engaging people of all ages in real-time exploration. Science Communication Fellows then bring their expedition experience back to their own classrooms, organizations, and communities in the form of engaging deliverables like lesson plans or activities centered on their time at sea aboard the E/V Nautilus.

“We are proud to have one of our educators selected for this unique communication and outreach opportunity,” said MEC Director Chris Snyder. “Through this Science Communication Fellowship, we are able to link our educational partners, teachers, students and visitors to real-time ocean exploration and surveying operations 2,500 miles away in the Pacific Ocean.”

Bailey said her time on the E/V Nautilus will help develop communication and educational skills that directly correlates with her duties at the MEC.

“I expect to gain new ways to present educational material, new resources and scientific contacts who all have similar goals as myself and the Marine Education Center,” she said. “I hope to be able to further connect our community with science exploration and the possibility of marine and ocean based careers.”

Dr. Bob Ballard created the Ocean Exploration Trust in 2008. Best known for his 1985 discovery of the RMS Titanic, Dr. Ballard has succeeded in tracking down numerous shipwrecks, including the German battleship Bismarck, the lost fleet of Guadalcanal, the U.S. aircraft carrier Yorktown and John F. Kennedy's boat, PT-109.

While aboard the 64-meter exploration vessel from Oct. 13-18, Bailey will be tasked with sharing activities, research, and daily life to a global audience.

“It is incredibly important to be able to communicate marine science with a global audience to show how all environmental systems help each other,” Bailey said. “As scientists, we network and link our work together all the time. The more we can learn and share, the further the work that we love doing can be spread.”

Bailey's next adventure begins at a training at The University of Rhode Island March 19-21 to meet the OET team, scientists, engineers, team leaders, crew, and learn about the 2019 expedition and it's goals as well as position instructions.

Editor Note: The E/V Nautilus live stream can be found at

CONTACT: James Skrmetta, GCRL Communications Officer, 228.872.4254, James.SkrmettaFREEMississippi