Meet the Coral Reef Gardener!
Sep, 19 2022
This summer, we ran a competition on our website to find a Coral Reef Gardener; a marine enthusiast who would work with us to help regenerate our coral reefs.
Rivkah Wolf-Camplin, a Zoology & Sustainability student from the USA, won the three-week placement at Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu out of hundreds of applicants. Rivkah flew out to the resort this month where we sat down with her to learn more about her as she begins working alongside Rosalie our Marine Educator on enhancing our coral garden.
1. What are you currently studying?
I am majoring in zoology with a minor in sustainability and a focus in endangered species restoration. I have about one year of school left.
2. What made you interested in marine biology?
I have always been interested in the planet and its species. My interest in the ocean became more prevalent when I met my now-husband, who taught me the joys of scuba diving. Through my studies I have learned just how important the ocean is to the health of the planet, and I personally believe that until the damage to the oceans is corrected, we do not stand a change of saving Earth.
3. What’s the most interesting marine creature you’ve ever encountered?
I volunteer at the Georgia Aquarium, and my favourite thing to do is dive in our whale shark tank. It is so awe striking to see the whale sharks and manta rays up close, and I am friends with many of the fish. I am very excited to hopefully get to see some of these species during my stay with Coco Collection!
4. What made you want to apply to the Coral Reef Gardener competition?
To me, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity. I have wanted to dive the Maldives ever since I learned how, because they are such a rich ecosystem with so many exotic species. This competition helps me fulfil that dream much better than I ever could on my own. It’s so much more than I could have hoped for because I will have an extended time to study the environment and learn from real professionals. I am very grateful to Coco Collection for this opportunity.
5. What are you hoping to achieve from this experience?
I want to learn, anything and everything I can! I am very new to the world of oceanic study, and I am excited to have a chance to work with a real expert in a variety of ways. I hope to take everything I learn from this experience to my diving elsewhere, and in my future career.
Rivkah & Rosalie
6. What are your post-graduation plans or goals?
My focus right now is two-fold. I would like to work on shark restoration, as many sharks are keystone species, and therefore vital to reviving the oceans. However, many sharks are reliant on coral reefs, so I am also interested in pursuing reef restoration. My dream job would be working out in the field with wild animals, but I am also considering working at facilities to do breeding such as non-profits and aquariums.