Savannah Hesidence (USA)

Why did you choose JCU?

Most of my education in the field of marine biology before coming to JCU was focused on oceanographic plankton studies and rocky intertidal zones, so I came to JCU to gain more practical experience in the field of marine biology. Throughout the Bachelor of Marine Science I have had the chance to study tropical reef ecosystems and marine megafauna.

What has been the highlight of your JCU experience?

The highlights of my JCU experience have been the fieldwork trips I have volunteered on. I have worked with two different species of sea turtles, helping to raise them for release back onto the Great Barrier Reef. I also discovered my love of black corals while volunteering at the Museum of Tropical Queensland.

Savannah Hesidence with JCU's Vice Chancellor Simon Biggs at the International Completion Ceremony June 2022.

What are your plans for the next few years now that you have completed your studies?

My plans are to return home to the USA for a short break and then hopefully continue onto my master's at JCU. I hope to continue working with sea turtles at The Caraplace, which is JCU’s turtle research centre. I also hope to continue working on black corals and their associates at the Museum of Tropical Queensland.

What advice would you like to share for prospective international students considering JCU?

Take as many pictures as possible, travel as much as you can (buy a car if you are staying for longer than six months), and make as many friends as possible! Get in the water as soon as you get here and start diving or get your dive certificates early on.