Today we started the day off with breakfast at 7 a.m., then a lecture about coral identification. First, we learned about the different characteristics each coral has and their names. After, we went into the dry lab where we practiced identifying 18 different coral species. 

After the classroom session, we went on our first dive at the “Four Sponges” dive spot. We practiced identifying corals during this dive. We also saw a huge green moray eel that was following us along the dive. We then ate lunch and had some free time. I spent my free time petting a wild cat! :)

Our next dive was at 2 p.m. We had our dive slates for this dive. It was our first time using them, so we were just trying to get comfortable identifying corals and recording our observations on our dive slates. On this dive we saw many colonies of symmetrical brain coral and staghorn coral. We also saw three lion fish hiding in a cave. 

We ended the day with a resort fiesta which included food and games. During the fiesta we got to meet a few other marine scientists from Tampa! 

-Cadet Kaia Coday

Check back often and follow the adventure with our blog series that gives the latest news from International Experience summer 2024 program traveling through Morocco and Honduras prior to returning to Vallejo on May 27, 2024.

Stay tuned for updates to the Follow the Adventure blog.

Established in 1929, California State University Maritime Academy is the only degree-granting maritime academy on the West Coast. Located in Vallejo, California, the campus offers undergraduate degrees that prepare students for careers in engineering, transportation, international relations, business, and global logistics. Cal Maritime also offers a master’s degree in Transportation and Engineering Management, as well as a number of extended learning programs and courses.