The Florida Aquarium

It was a beautiful summer afternoon where I was wearing my scuba dive gears and swimming in the 93,000-gallon saltwater exhibit where the sharks were swimming with me. It was the most memorable summer of my life where I got the opportunity to follow my passion for learning about marine life. It was dream come true when I made it as a Junior Educator at The Florida Aquarium. It was intriguing to meet people from all over the world as the aquarium was right next to the Cruise Port. I got to interact with so many people and enlighten them about marine life when it was my day to work on the Gallery Pathways. These interactions enabled me to improve my confidence and communication skills significantly. The confidence I gained helped me to experience freedom from self-doubts and negative thoughts that I am poor at interacting with others. My joy was seeing visitors understand more about marine life and get fascinated by it. Some even informed me that they have fallen in love with marine life and would start keeping small aquariums in their houses! I was working tirelessly for hours without realizing it was time to go home! I could not wait to return back to the aquarium. Guiding those 3 to 9-year-old AquaCampers for their summer camp program was a little strange in the beginning. I thought I was a kid myself and it was new to be responsible for other kids! It gave me a sense of pride and responsibility. Spending time with kids made me realized that I am a lot more patient than some of my friends. I never knew that! I thoroughly enjoyed teaching the campers and learned that a little bit of planning goes a long way when dealing with the young explorers. This experience of being a Junior Educator made me go out of my comfort zone at times and it transformed me as a person. Besides learning exceptional customer service, teamwork, discipline, confidence, public speaking, working at the aquarium has helped me discover my path. It was at Florida Aquarium, where I connected my two passions – Marine Animals and Math! I met someone at The Florida Aquarium who worked as Finance Director as his day job and volunteered on weekends for his passion. That would be fun for me. To pursue my passion for Math, I plan to graduate in Finance. Looking back (and perhaps unintentionally), the experiences from my job as an educator at the aquarium taught me valuable lessons. It helped me learn we can enjoy most activities or jobs by having much interest in them. The job made me realize the importance of hard work. Spending nights continuously researching the marine life at the aquarium enabled me to learn how to answer any questions about the animals from the visitors – after all, it was what I had signed up for when I decided to apply for an internship at the Florida Aquarium. Researching also helped me understand that I did not know everything about ordinary marine life. There is always room to expand one’s knowledge. Like Benjamin Franklin said, “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest”. Therefore, I am looking forward to a Degree in Finance and Business. Pursuing an undergraduate program will enable me to expand my knowledge even further. These skills that I have gained will come in handy in college and my future career. John Maxwell once said, “Goals may give focus, but dreams give power.” My summer at The Florida Aquarium was picture perfect, and it empowered me to dream my future and build upon that first step of my life. 

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