EXCEL Students Get Excited About Exploration

EXCEL Students Get Excited About Exploration

Campbell “Buzz” Scott of Newcastle, Maine, an ROV pilot and expert in different facets of deep-sea exploration and science research, recently paid a visit to Islip’s EXCEL program for the academically gifted. The founder of the Maine educational program OceansWide spoke to the middle schoolers about the adventures of exploration using ROVs as part of EXCEL’s ongoing “Inventing Self” series of inspirational guest lectures.

Scott studied biology and mechanical engineering, was a Seabee in the U.S. Navy, and spent 17 years as a commercial fisherman in the Gulf of Maine. He then worked on supply ships in the Gulf of Mexico and for the United States Antarctic program as a marine technician, sailing on scientific research ships around Antarctica, crashing through sea ice and enduring cold temperatures. In 1997, he relocated to California where he worked as a mechanical technician and remotely operated unmanned submersible pilot for the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute as well as for the reknowned Bob Ballard in Rhode Island. The tethered submarine has allowed him to work closely with scientists from around the world as they study the deep canyons below the Pacific’s surface, discovering and capturing sea creatures that have never been seen before.

He showed the fascinated students images of animals he encountered during his work, including whales, squid, viperfish and penguins, as well as photos of his many valued mentors.

“It’s important for these kids to have mentors, and mentors come from all different directions,” said Scott. “These kids are intelligent, open and inquisitive. These are the kind of kids we are looking for our adventures and exploration, and adventures get us excited about what we can do."