The Team

Ship Location

San Pedro, USA

Megan Lubetkin

Photo of Megan Lubetkin
Science / Data Team
Bates College

Tell us about your work / research. What kinds of things do you do?

My research interests are in the fields of marine geology, geochemistry, and geographic information science. As an undergraduate pursuing a degree in the field of geology, I became increasingly fascinated by the tectonic and hydrothermal happenings on the seafloor. I’ve specifically focused my studies and research on hydrothermal mineralization, seafloor mapping, remote sensing phenology, and various human-environmental applications of geographic information systems. This past year I completed my undergraduate senior thesis on the hydrothermal biomineralization of nontronite and Fe-oxides collected from a seamount in the Galapagos during the 2015 E/V Nautilus season. I am passionate about exploring the oceans and understanding the geological, physical, and chemical systems governing them.

What sparked your initial interest in your career?

When I was 14 years old my family moved to the coast of Maine. Before then, the ocean was merely a memory from childhood vacations on sandy beaches. As I began to explore tide pools and rock formations surrounding the coastlines near my home, I quickly developed a love for the ocean and its rich diversity of life. We all rely on the health of our oceans. they link every culture and society on this planet. From an early age, I hoped to explore the complex systems and structure of the ocean in order to understand how we may better coexist with its diverse ecosystems. 

Who influenced you or encouranced you the most?

All of my middle and high school science teachers were tremendously supportive and encouraged me to never stop asking questions. While in high school, I heard Dr. Robert Ballard speak about ocean exploration and hydrothermal vents. From that moment, I knew it was a dream of mine to join the Corps of Exploration. I followed Nautilus Live ever since. 

What element of your work / study do you think is the most fascinating?

The most fascinating element of my work in the field of marine geology is the thrill of discovering new features and collaborating with teams of scientists to understand how they formed. 

What other jobs led you to your current career?

I’ve had many opportunities to study my interests in school both in the US and abroad. In 2015, I spent a semester in New Zealand at the University of Otago where I focused my studies on remote sensing technologies, photogrammetry, and geographic information systems. I also recently spent a semester at the Sea Education Association in Woods Hole and on board the SSV Corwith Cramer on a transatlantic sail. My diverse academic experiences, internships, and role as a teaching assistant in the Geology Department at Bates College all lead me to my current career path. 

What are your degrees and certifications?

I recently graduated from Bates College in May 2016 with a Bachelor of Science in Geology, and general concentrations in ‘Water and Society,’ ‘North Atlantic Studies,’ and ‘Philosophy.’ I am an Advanced PADI certified SCUBA diver and hold certifications in outdoor first aid and emergency management. 

What are your hobbies?

Most of my time off the ship and out of the lab/classroom is spent doing something active and exciting in the mountains, playing Indian classical music and jazz on my cello, and traveling.

What advice would you give someone who is interested in a career like yours?

The best advice I can give to young aspiring oceanographers is to never stop asking why. Study what you love and look for opportunities that relate to your passions, but always be open to projects that may help you narrow down your interests. Taking chances and being proactive is how I got on Nautilus.  

How did you get involved with the Nautilus Exploration Program? How did you get on the ship?

I first got involved with the Nautilus Exploration Program as an Ocean Science and Seafloor Mapping Intern in 2015.

"We all rely on the health of our oceans, they link every culture and society on this planet. While on board the Nautilus, I look forward to exploring the complex systems and structure of the ocean in order to understand how we may better coexist with its diverse ecosystems."