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Understanding the oceans is an essential aspect of appreciating how the world works and how we relate to it as human beings. The sea is so complex that it is impossible to comprehend from the perspective of a single academic discipline. With that in mind, this interdisciplinary semester combines insights from oceanography, the humanities, and the social sciences with practical skills in seamanship, allowing students to deepen their awareness of and appreciation for the ocean through hands-on research and personal experience. Each semester offers a unique academic theme allowing students to address and answer some of the most pressing global questions related to the ocean environment.
On Shore in Woods Hole: During the 6-week shore component, intensive academic coursework prepares students for their research cruise. With full access to SEA faculty and the world-renowned Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution/Marine Biological Laboratory Library, students design original research projects to be completed at sea. Maritime Studies provides a wider historical and social perspective on the impact of humans on the world's oceans, and on the experience of going to sea. Nautical Science introduces practical seamanship skills and the theoretical background necessary to safely operate a tall ship on the open ocean.
At Sea on the Open Ocean: As full, working members of the scientific team and sailing crew on one of SEA's state-of-the-art research vessels, students manage shipboard operations, navigate by the stars, analyze oceanographic samples, and visit foreign ports off the beaten path. Most importantly, students learn to challenge themselves and develop new leadership, teamwork, and research skills. Depending on the semester, students may have the option to choose between sailing in the Caribbean, Atlantic, or Pacific.
What's Included in the Cost of SEA Semester?
Room & Board