Science Career Project

By:Ta'Leah Van Sistine|Name of Career: Oceanographer

Work description | How it involves science

There are many things oceanographers can do. For example, some study the animals in the ocean and take samples of the ocean water to see how resourceful it is to the animals. They also group the animals into species. Others actually observe the sea floor and study how it affects the air and the coastlines. To be an oceanographer would involve a lot of science. Oceanography is under two branches of science, life and earth science. It incorporates earth science when they study the ocean floors and coastlines since these are major parts of our earth. It incorporates life science when they study the living things on the ocean floor such as coral and fish.

Education path

When one is on the path of becoming an oceanographer, a good degree to major in is oceanography. When going to school to major in this degree a student would get prepped for the job by learning what occurs in the ocean and how it interacts with the earths atmosphere and land. In addition, they would study the sea floor and how pollution affects the ocean. What I found interesting about the program was its good to have excellent communication skills because students will be expected to give presentations and they encourage internships to get good experience. Before a student does that, some good classes to take in high school to ensure a good knowledge of the job are calculus, chemistry, physics, and statistics and probability. In college there's too many courses to name that would help but some are chemical oceanography, marine biology, weather and climate, and physical geology.

College | Academics

After high school when I'm packing my things for college I can see myself going to the University of Miami. I think this would be a great school to study oceanography because Florida is really warm most of the time and its a relaxing state. It just makes sense to go there to study oceanography considering there's the Gulf of Mexico near Miami so I would be able to actually experience what the job is like. As you can tell from the name of the college, it's located in Miami, Florida in a suburban setting. It's a university and a private school, with only eleven students in each class so the student to faculty ratio is 11:1. They offer a minimum of 4 years and a max of 8. To get into this school you have to be very smart, the average GPA score of freshman college students is a 4.2, average ACT score is 30-36, and the average SAT score is 600-699.

Working conditions and places | Factors that affect employment

Depending on what kind of oceanographer you are your work conditions will vary. If you are the kind that spends most of their time in the sea you would most likely be put in cramped quarters. If you are one that can dive, their work can be physically demanding. It is most commonly found that they work at universities to teach or with private/government institutions. Wisconsin has jobs for oceanographers but they mostly have to deal with drilling for oil and natural gas. Some industries work the environmental part of the job too. It is common to have a job as an oceanographer in Wisconsin but on a national level, it's more common to get a job as an oceanographer somewhere else in the U.S.

Salary | Employer

The Wisconsin salary for oceanographers is $41,300 to $109,080 but the national salary is $48,820 to $160,910. There was a very long list of employers but one of them is the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and its located in Green Bay, Wisconsin.


I think being an oceanographer would be a cool job and I can definitely see myself doing it someday. The pros of this occupation would be getting to see all of the unique animals and experiencing a dive in one of the beautiful oceans. Some cons though would be if the actual diving job wasn't available and I would have to work in an office all day and observe what the others found from the ocean. Also, I would have to go to college for a pretty long time, at least 6 years or more so I could get my masters degree or a degree higher up.


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