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British Virgin Islands - 2017, Session 1

Happy Our Staff Update Day 1

Location: West End, Tortola

We have been running around the AQ base here at West End to get ourselves all ready for our first group of the summer. We could not be more excited to meet all of you and officially get ActionQuest 2017 started with a BANG! Our beautiful, enviable vessel, Happy Our has all the gear we need for an epic session stowed away. We've taken our dinghy and partner in crime, Sumo, for a few rips around the anchorage, just to make sure that, you know, it’s in working order and let us assure you... it certainly is! Our lesson plans are set for our resident Neptunes (the advanced diving students) and Dolphins (the marine bio team) and cannot wait to impart all our wisdom onto you! Our course is set, the charts are out, all we need is our crew! Get ready for the best summer ever!
Here is an introduction to the crew of Happy Our:
Cat- skipper/dive instructor/WFR
Captain Cat was born and raised in West Texas and has since made it her mission to be closer to the sea. She spends as much time as she can on the water in her new home, Seattle, Washington. She became a PADI Scuba Instructor when she was 18 years old and has taught diving from the BVI all the way down to Grenada! Cat also holds both an IYT and USCG captain's license as well as her Wilderness First Responder certification. Cat attended the University of Puget Sound and graduated in 2011 with a Bachelors degree in International Political Economy. While at university she took a quick break to sail across the Atlantic with Seamester aboard Argo and was forever changed! She now plans her life around traveling and has been to all 7 continents. In the winter, she teaches skiing in the beautiful mountains of the Pacific Northwest and is attempting to teach herself to snowboard. She loves riding around on her longboard, listening to podcasts, and laughing at her own jokes. Cat plans to pursue a master’s degree in teaching and hopes to inspire others with her love of science!
Justin- dive instructor/mate
Justin is going into his senior year at Indiana University. While he studies Informatics with a cognate in business, his true passions are exploring the ocean and environmental awareness. He has been scuba diving for almost ten years and has had the opportunity to help a lot of people find joy in learning about the underwater world. Being an ActionQuest shipmate alumni, he can't wait to facilitate the same experience he had to future students!
Lauren- dive instructor/mate
Lauren grew up on the east coast of Florida where she enjoyed scuba diving with her family and developed a love for surfing. Hoping to get a taste of the west coast, Lauren worked a summer on Catalina Island as a skin diving, kayaking and paddle-boarding instructor. She then graduated from the University of South Florida with a B.S. in Marine Biology, during which she assisted with teaching open water diving at USF and worked as a trip leader for the university’s Outdoor Recreation program. She has since continued her diving education, and become an open water diving instructor. Lauren hops on any boat that floats, including sailboats in Fiji and the Caribbean, and research vessels in Florida, New Zealand, and Saudi Arabia. Some of her land-based hobbies include hiking, rock climbing and eating tacos.