UGA Skidaway Institute scientist and grad student attend int’l conference in Vietnam

UGA Skidaway Institute scientist Sara Rivero-Calle and graduate student Mallie Hunt travelled to Quy Nhon, Vietnam, in October to participate in the 25th International Ocean Optics Meeting ( Rivero-Calle focuses much of her work on studying the ocean with satellites.

“It is one of the most specific and relevant meetings for me because it is international,” Rivero-Calle said. “It brought together scientists from all over the world who work on ocean optics and aquatic satellite remote sensing. It also included program managers from NASA and other space agencies, and companies that sell the instruments that I use.”

Mallie Hunt (left) and Sara Rivero-Calle in Vietnam

Rivero-Calle has been attending this semi-annual meeting since she was in graduate school. The meeting was almost a reunion for her with mentors, colleagues and friends she has made in the field, but more important was the trip’s professional purpose.

“It was a big deal for me to attend and let my colleagues know that I have established an ocean optics lab at Skidaway Institute,” she said. “I gave a talk presenting all the projects in my lab, and it was very well received.”

An outdoor poster session at the conference

The conference was not all work and no play. Quy Nhon is a beach town, and both the hotel and conference center were near the ocean.

“The hotel had ocean views, and the conference center was at another location by the beach,” she said. “Lunches were a fully catered Vietnamese splurge of goodness, buffet-style. I ate so many different delicious foods!

“After lunch most of us went swimming in the ocean before the afternoon session. Can’t beat that.”

For Hunt, the trip to the conference was an experience she says she will never forget. “I was able to meet with other researchers in the same field and receive valuable feedback during my poster presentation that will help me in my future work,” she said. “I am so glad I had the opportunity to see a new country and to present the work I have completed over the past year.”


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