An Interview with WiseOceans… Bernard Toinette from WiseOceans
This week we chat to Bernard, our very own Skipper and Marine Education support. Bernard, who comes from the beautiful island of Mauritius has over 20 years experience at sea and is a certified diver. He joined the team in Mauritius this year as our skipper, driving our snorkelling guests to our reef sites, enthusing about the marine life and working on our Reef Restoration Project. His advice is to work hard for the result you want.
Name: Bernard Toinette
Job Title: Skipper and Marine Education Support
What inspired you to pursue a career in marine conservation?
Everytime I snorkel, I stand amazed at the variety of living thing under the sea. Whether it’s a big fish or a gorgeous tiny colourful creature. They are all just amazing. Marine conservation gives these colourful creatures a chance to survive and promotes balance in our marine life and on our planet as well. It also gives our future generations a chance to admire how our beautiful seas.
What steps did you take/are you taking to achieve your career goals?
My goal itself is to help conserve our oceans. Lots of continuous work is needed to achieve this goal and through WiseOceans’ objectives and taking part in community outreach, the Reef Restoration Project, marine education and conservation I feel like I’ve now got the opportunity to step in and get involved.
How did you land your current job/position?
I had worked alongside the WiseOceans team in my previous role in another company so I already knew what WiseOceans did. When the opportunity came along to join the team and work on the Reef Restoration Project, it was a great chance for me to get involved in marine conservation as well as continue to be a skipper and be out at sea.
Which part of your job do you enjoy the most?
Taking other people snorkelling permits me to show them how beautiful the underwater world is.
Are there aspects of your position which make you feel that you are really ‘making a difference’?
Our Reef Restoration Project that we are currently setting up. When I saw all the damaged corals I knew that the work we are doing will make a difference in helping to restore our reef.
What do you know now that you wish you knew when you were starting out?
Really I am always learning new skills and that is part of the job that I love.
Are there any skills you never thought you would need but did?
Computer skills were a bit challenging at the beginning but with the help of my colleagues, I feel that am more confident now.
What advice would you give to budding marine conservationists?
That hard works leads to good results!
What is your favourite marine creature and why?
I love nudibranchs, they are so beautiful.
What is your most unforgettable moment in the sea?
A close encounter with two sperm whales in the open sea (sadly no pictures!).
Thank you Bernard, we agree that lots of work is needed to protect our oceans into the future so that future generations can see how beautiful the oceans are.
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