July 13, 2017

2017 Summer Intern Profile: Victoria Assad

Name: Victoria Assad

Project/Mentor: Deep-sea benthic associations with CO2 flux with Ken Smith and Christine Huffard

School: California State University, Monterey Bay

Hometown: Los Angeles, California

Tell us about your project: I’m working on studying how the food supply affects the behavioral patterns of the benthic acorn worm Tergivelum baldwinae. Basically, these little guys are known for creating fecal spirals. I’m seeing how that behavior might change based on how much food is available to them, which has been changing a lot recently as a result of CO2 flux and climate change. I’m doing all this work from tripod images made by the Pulse trips at Station M and using VARs for images to collect my data. I’m having a lot of fun with it so far and researching these guys has been a blast!

Why did you want to intern for MBARI: I’ve always been that person extremely fascinated by the “weird” creatures on the planet. Show me something funny looking or that has some odd behavior and I’m so excited I’ll be bouncing on the balls of my feet. So the deep sea has always been a passion of mine, and anything marine related at all when it comes down to it. Since I’ve decided to go into marine science I’ve wanted to intern at a place where deep-sea research is a focus, so MBARI was the absolute perfect fit for me. I was so excited after seeing it affiliated with the REU at CSUMB.  When I saw there was a change to work with Ken and Crissy on their focuses in the deep sea, there was no option but to put them down as my top choice. I am so glad I got placed with them!

What’s been your favorite part of MBARI so far: I think my favorite part of MBARI so far has been seeing how passionate people are in their projects. Whether it’s the interns or the mentors, everyone seems to have interest and enjoyment in their work. It’s amazing to be surrounded by people like that. My favorite thing is to see people passionate about something, and being in a place like MBARI makes me excited about what I’m doing too. I also love all the other interns. Y’all are so cool and I’m so happy to be working alongside you guys for the rest of the summer. I can’t wait to see what everyone comes up with!

And, if you had a boat, what would you name it? Probably something really cheesy like Vitamin Sea.

Meet the rest of MBARI’s 2017 Summer Interns


Data repository
Data policy
Deep-Sea Guide
What is happening in Monterey Bay today?
Central and Northern California Ocean Observing System
Chemical data
Ocean float data
Slough data
Mooring ISUS measurements
Southern Ocean Data
Mooring data
M1 Mooring Summary Data
M1 Asimet
M1 download Info
M1 EMeter
Molecular and genomics data
ESP Web Portal
Seafloor mapping
Soundscape Listening Room
Upper ocean data
Spatial Temporal Oceanographic Query System (STOQS) Data
Image gallery
Video library
Creature feature
Deep-sea wallpapers
Previous seminars
David Packard Distinguished Lecturers
Research software
Video Annotation and Reference System
System overview
Data Use Policy
Video Tape User Guide
Video File User Guide
Annotation Glossary
Query Interface
Basic User Guide
Advanced User Guide
Query Glossary
VARS publications
VARS datasets used in publications
Oceanographic Decision Support System
MB-System seafloor mapping software
How to download and install MB-System
MB-System Documentation
MB-System Announcements
MB-System Announcements (Archive)
MB-System FAQ
MB-System Discussion Lists
MB-System YouTube Tutorials
Matlab scripts: Linear regressions
Introduction to Model I and Model II linear regressions
A brief history of Model II regression analysis
Index of downloadable files
Summary of modifications
Regression rules of thumb
Results for Model I and Model II regressions
Graphs of the Model I and Model II regressions
Which regression: Model I or Model II?
Matlab scripts: Oceanographic calculations
Matlab scripts: Sound velocity
Visual Basic for Excel: Oceanographic calculations
Educational resources
Navigating STEM careers
MBARI Summer Internship Program
2017 Summer Interns Blog
Education and Research: Testing Hypotheses (EARTH)
EARTH workshops
2016—New Brunswick, NJ
2015—Newport, Oregon
2016 Satellite workshop—Pensacola, FL
2016 Satellite workshop—Beaufort, NC
EARTH resources
EARTH lesson plans
Lesson plans—published
Lesson plans—development
Lesson drafts—2015
Lesson drafts—2016 Pensacola
Adopt-A-Float Program
Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education (C-MORE) Science Kits
Science at home: Curriculum and resources
Sample archive
SciComm Resources