January 30, 2019

Fatima FloresHello, I’m Fatima Flores Almanza and I am one of the A Rising Tides scholars.

The reason I submitted my application was because my postsecondary coach encouraged me too. She thought that I would be interested because I seemed to be very adventurous. I also wanted to experience something new and unknown to me. Once I got accepted into the program, I could not believe it!!! I was so excited to start a new journey in my life. I was also scared also because I had never learned how to swim, which was kind of crazy because I was 15 and I still did not know how to swim.

Once I told the Ocean First team that I did not know how to swim, which was very important to know how to swim in order to dive, they set me up with swimming lessons. I was embarrassed to learn how to swim since I was so much older than all the other kids at Ocean First. I was terrified of the deep end when I was learning to swim. Although when I would get in my scuba gear and jump in the deep end, I was not scared at all; I felt fine.

I would say after officially learning how to swim, I felt great and confident in going to the Florida Keys!! I was a little nervous to be going to a place I have never been before.No plastic straws Also, leaving my family and traveling alone would be something new for me. Besides all of that, I was excited to see somewhere new- especially the ocean!!

Getting to know the group was something I looked forward too since I didn’t really know them like I know my friends at my school. I liked that we all became so close; it was crazy because at first we didn’t even talk to each other and we would be awkward and wouldn’t say anything. I’m glad that we got to know each other because now I have a whole group of diving buddies!!

After this whole experience, I see myself protecting the Earth. I have completely ditched plastics straws and everyone around me has also. I always try to minimize the amount of plastic that I use or try to avoid it all. This program was great and I highly recommend people to try new things- even if you don’t know how to do it at first, just give it a try.

You May Also Like

ARisingTide, conservation, education, scuba, diving, students, marine science

The Next Chapter

Micaela Kimmett, A Rising Tide Scholar

Winner-winner, seafood dinner! Hi, I'm Mica and I'm one of the lucky TIDES 2 scholarship recipients!

a rising tide, tides, education, scuba, diving, marine, science, conservation

Go Big!

Joshua Johnston, A Rising Tide Scholar

Looking back on this year as it comes to a close, I’ve had some important life-changing experiences.

marine science, conservation, education, courses, 360, video, lesson plans

Looking Ahead

Catherine E. Christopher, Ocean First Education

Another year is coming to an end, which brings with it a time for reflection and looking ahead.