As part of its mission to train the next generation of ocean explorers, the NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration hosts undergraduate and graduate students in the Explorer-in-Training program, where participants gain valuable experience in deepwater mapping and exploration.
A typical Explorer-in-Training (EiT) placement will consist of one (1) 20- to 30-day expedition either offshore aboard NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer and/or onshore at the University of New Hampshire (UNH) Exploration Command Center (ECC) in Durham, New Hampshire.
Offshore EiTs will stand an eight-hour mapping watch for seven days a week throughout their cruise assignment(s). The duties of at-sea mapping watch standers typically include the acquisition and processing of multibeam data and associated sound velocity profile data, as well as precise record keeping.
Onshore EiTs will stand an eight-hour watch at the UNH ECC. This opportunity will provide excellent experience with seafloor mapping sonars, data analysis, and software technology, as well as real-time watch standing and communication with the ship through telepresence equipment in place at the UNH ECC.
Both onshore and offshore trainees will also complete a project of their own interest, with approval and support from experienced mapping team personnel. Travel and housing will be provided as part of both opportunities.
Standard experiences and training during an expedition include:
-Acquisition and processing of multibeam data
-Use of hydrographic processing and display software
-Use of geographic information systems (GIS) software packages
-Acquisition and processing of sub-bottom and fisheries sonars
-Familiarity with at-sea routines