Bravo 1 Trip Update Day 1
Today was arrival day for Bravo! This morning three of our Bravo staff – Marwan, Laura, and Steph – took the ferry to St. Thomas to meet students who flew in there. The rest of the staff prepared boats and stocked the fridges with fresh local produce in anticipation of our students’ arrival. Around lunch time 4 more students made it to Hodges Creek, and Tim took them out on the ski boat for watersports. Elizabeth arrived a little later, and the students are currently hanging by the pool, waiting for the next big arrival of approximately 28 students. They will arrive around 6 p.m., just in time for a Caribbean dinner followed by the Mike Talk and the first boat meeting!
Cli Breathnatch, Program Director
This will be my sixth summer at Sail Caribbean. I have been a Mate, Captain, & Program Director for the Bravo and Charlie programs. For the past two summers I have been the Sailing Director. In 2005 I earned a 4 year degree in Outdoor education at the Galway Mayo Institute of technology in Ireland after which I traveled and worked in the outdoors, becoming more involved in sailing and learning how to dive along the way. I am now studying for my masters and Dr. of Chiropractic in the University Of Glamorgan, Wales. I have worked with teens and children in a coaching and leadership capacity from the age of 17. While in College I worked as a part time freelance activity instructor before graduating in 2005. I then began working fulltime as a multi activity instructor in outdoor education and summer activity centres on the east and west coasts of Ireland where i taught lessons in kayaking, sailing, surfing, climbing, absailing, camp craft and hillwalking. I joined Sail Caribbean in 2007 as a mate and have never looked back. To me Sail Caribbean is more than a job; it’s a second home and as a staff member returning for my 6th summer I’d have to say I also consider myself a family member, and that I am returning home for summer. Sail Caribbean and Mike Liese have a great way of making you instantly feel welcome. My first day on the job I knew immediately that this is no ordinary summer camp, and that this was the beginning of a great journey. The effort and care placed upon creating a worthwhile, educational, and fun filled experience does not apply just to our students but also to their staff. I come back each year because I love meeting our new staff and watching them begin that journey, I love watching our veteran staff return to take the ride again to see what they can learn this time. The main reason I come back however is because of the experiences I get to see and create for our students; to watch them grow and learn in the special way they do at Sail Caribbean makes me incredibly happy & proud. Something funny you should know about me… I sunburn real easy and get massive panda eyes from my sunglasses, so really should avoid 3 months in the Caribbean – but just can’t resist…
Jeff Pollack, Fleet Captain
This is my sixth summer at Sail Caribbean. I have worked on the Bravo and Charlie programs as a mate, Fleet Captain and Operations Manager. I attended UT Dallas – Class of 2010 and earned my B.S in Business Administration. USCG OUPV PADI Advanced Open Water. I come back to Sail Caribbean each summer because I have a real passion for teaching students how to sail. Teaching them how to water-ski and wakeboard is a great bonus. Each summer I have enjoyed working with both students and staff from different parts of the world. Some of my hobbies are Sailing, water skiing, Wake-boarding, Scuba diving, Snow skiing and Photography. Something funny you should know about me…The first year I worked at Camp W.A.D.E I was not old enough to participate in the course but I was allowed to teach!
Rynn Steck, Provisioning Manager
This past May, I graduated from Hamilton College where I concentrated in environmental studies. I spent a semester abroad in Madagascar studying biodiversity and natural resource management. Highlights definitely included studying rural fishing communities and marine protected areas for an independent study project. I have been snorkeling since I could swim and received my first scuba certification in 2009. I started sailing when I was 7 years old and fell head over heels in love with the wind and the water. I spent my summers sailing at camps and later became a sailing instructor and camp counselor. While attending Hamilton, I hiking, camped, kayaked, and canoed my way through the Adirondacks as an Outing Club Officer and a pre-orientation, outdoors trip leader. In past summers, I’ve lead hiking trips in the Berkshires and in Colorado and now I can’t wait to make my way down to the Caribbean! My experiences sailing as a teenager were some of the most transformative experiences in my life; conquering the wind and the waves can make a girl feel fearless! I hope to inspire others to challenge themselves and experientially develop a love of sailing and the environment. I am thrilled to work for Sail Caribbean this summer because I am confident that each program whether through sailing, diving, service, or science; fosters personal growth and provides the opportunity for the adventures of a lifetime! My interests include photography and art, watching documentaries, rollerblading, and growing sprouts. Silly fact about myself? Although I’m a huge fan of fruit, it took me 21 years to get over my irrational fear of bananas. I had my first bite last year and now, I eat them all the time!
Molly Rosenbaum, Dive Coordinator
This will be my second summer at Sail Caribbean. I was a Dive Coordinator, Dive Instructor and Mate on the Charlie program. I was also a Dive Intern for Sail Caribbean Divers. I graduated from Brown University in 2008 with a degree in English Literature. I am finishing up my Master’s degree in Social and Cultural Anthropology at University College London in the autumn. Last spring, I received my Open Water Scuba Instructor certification. Needless to say, I love scuba diving, but what brings me back to Sail Caribbean for another summer is how much fun both the campers and staff have on a daily basis. From bonding over mealtime games to sailing on gorgeous Caribbean waters, every day is stock full of memorable moments. I love to bake, run and read good books. Something funny you should know about me…I walk into anything within a 2 foot radius of my path, which could be why I find scuba diving so relaxing; it is usually easier to avoid objects when you float along slowly.
Dave Rogers, Captain
This will be my first summer at Sail Caribbean. I graduated in 2008 from the University of Mary Washington, majoring in Studio Art. I took two courses with NOLS following college; one focusing on backpacking and outdoor education, the other on coastal sailing. I’ve worked seasonally the last couple years mostly with conservation corps in the summer, doing work ranging from, native plant restoration, trail work/maintenance, carpentry, and state park management. For two summers, I led crews for the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps, living and working together as part of a positive and functioning community. In the winter I teach snowboarding lessons to all ages at ski resorts. I attended and later worked at a summer camp in Virginia for most of my youth and during college. I took two semesters of Photo in College. Working at Sail Caribbean will be a great way to work as part of a team in a beautiful environment, interacting with young folks and having a good time, and a time to feel closer to the life-breathing power of water. In my spare time I play ultimate Frisbee, and do woodworking. Something funny you should know about me…. I can, at times, be so minimalistic it’s debilitating.
Lily Everson, Captain
This will be my first summer with Sail Caribbean. I am originally from Ohio, and just graduated from Jacksonville University with a degree in marine science. I grew up sailing small boats on Lake Eerie, and in college I was captain of the sailing team, a learn to sail instructor, and sail team coach. In my free time I love paddle boarding and traveling! I am thrilled to join the Sail Caribbean team. I’m looking forward to both teaching and learning about the British Virgin Islands and the Caribbean, especially the coral reef ecology and marine life of the area. An interesting fact about me…my pinky toe looks like a beluga whale (I think!).
Sara Stone, Captain
This will be my first summer at Sail Caribbean. I am entering my senior year at Dartmouth College in Hanover, NH where I have designed my own major. I am studying a combination of anthropology, ethics, engineering science, philosophy and biology and I hope to apply this to my interest in global health and international relations.
In past summers I have worked as a Sailing Instructor and have earned my US Sailing Level 1 Instructor license and small boating license. I have been sailing for as long as I can remember – I grew up on the water in Marion, MA and have spent every summer cruising and racing around Cape Cod, the Elizabeth Islands, Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket. I also earned my Scuba certification in the BVI when I was in high school. I love children and have spent summers working with them, most recently as a Sailing Instructor/Camp Counselor with the Tabor Academy Summer Program, and in previous summers as an au pair in France! Sail Caribbean combines three of the things I most enjoy – being on a boat, working as a member of a team, and working with teens. What better way for me to spend my summer?! I love to do anything outdoors! Sailing, swimming, hiking, camping, you name it. I also LOVE to travel – especially to places where I don’t speak the language – it is an added, exciting challenge! Something you should know about me… I used to be a runway model!
Luke Whitcraft, Mate
Originally from San Diego, California, I am currently a student at Prescott College focusing on a degree in adventure education and marine studies. I have been sailing since I was 8 years old, and have sailed in a few races including the Duck Shoe Race, an eight mile race in the San Diego Harbor. This will be my first year working with Sail Caribbean but not my first year working with teens in a similar environment. I have previous experience as an Assistant Lifeguard for the Torrey Pines Junior Life Guard Association. I worked with TPJG’s for nearly three entire summers acting as a standing Life Guard and playing the role of an Assistant to help with instruction. I also worked for the Birch Aquarium for about 2 years as a volunteer tide pool interpreter. I helped families and teens learn about the environment in their backyard that some had never even known existed. Also over the course of my high school years and during my assisting with the TPJG’s I did a lot of film work and took a few advanced photography classes. I am a certified PADI Dive Master. Something funny that you should know about me…I can never figure out which way to comb my hair.
Tamara Greak, Mate
This will be my first summer at Sail Caribbean. I am a junior at University of North Carolina-Wilmington, majoring in Spanish and Psychology. I am the co-captain this upcoming year for our sailing team, and also the co-founder. We practice year round on 420’s or FJ’s. I have my Level One certification as well as my PADI open water diving certification. I have done some diving in the western Caribbean, including a night dive and I have also done an off shore dive in the Outer Banks, NC. I am very passionate about both of these activities, and I am looking forward to the experience to be gained with Sail Caribbean. I have worked at Carolina Yacht Club as a sailing instructor for the past three years with kids from the ages of 8 to 18. We taught dinghy sailing, and depending on the students age/experience, we instruct using Opti’s, Sunfish, Laser’s, and 420’s. We taught the basics of sailing and racing to beginners and intermediates. I am extremely excited about gaining experience on larger boats and also hoping to gain more experience diving. Also, location, location, location! I have never traveled to the eastern Caribbean and I am more than ready to explore the islands and see different cultures, wildlife, etc. I am also looking forward to working for such a prestigious company and meeting the staff. I am going into this without knowing anyone, which I am very excited about! I can’t wait to see what the students bring to the table as well. I am certain I will learn just as much from them as they learn from me. In my spare time I love sailing and diving, obviously. In addition to that however, I love reading and cooking. I love exploring wildlife, whether it is through hiking on land or snorkeling off shore. My top five hobbies would have to be sailing, diving, reading, cooking and exercising. Well I am not very funny, so I have no idea what to say here. I do know that my awkwardness has entertained others in the past. From tripping up the stairs, to putting my foot in my mouth on several occasions, I am overall an awkward person. I have learned to accept it and laugh at myself as well. You will see.
Steph Bouillion, Mate
During the school year I work as a Biology and Physics teacher in Plano, Texas and am currently in school to become a fire fighter/Paramedic. I went to school at the University of Kansas and graduated from the University of Texas at Dallas with a degree in Biology, Psychology and Sociology. During that time I spent 6 months in Ireland on the ocean shore and at the local zoo studding both marine and land animals.
I have always been a fish stuck on land. I grew up boating and jet skiing, swimming, and lifeguarding. The water has always been my favorite place to be. Living in Texas it is mostly the pool and the lake, but I love the ocean as well. I took sailing lessons last summer and very much enjoyed it. Diving has become my new love ever since my first day out. I have advanced through the ranks to a rescue diver and love being out photographing the underwater world. Weather on the water, in it swimming, or under it, I am at home in the water. As a high school teacher and manger and lifeguard instructor at the local pool, I work with teens every day. It is a joy seeing them learn and grow, knowing that I am investing in the world to come. I have also spent many previous summers at young life camp working the water front and the ropes courses. I have heard wonderful things from friends of mine who have worked for Sail Caribbean. It is amazing what they get to do with these kids and the activities that the kids get to take part in. Also I have heard nothing but glowing statements about the kids and other staff. I am looking forward to working with the kids and my fellow staff. It will be a thrill this year to be a part of the magnificent sail Caribbean staff for the first time. In my spare time my hobbies are Triathlons, Lifeguarding, Mt. Biking, baking, and photography. Something funny you should know about me…I have a very squeaky high pitch laugh, I sneeze in multiples of 3, and my favorite animal is a squirrel.
Marwan Mohey-el-dien, Mate
After graduating high school in 2007, I studied towards marine biology at Lynn University in south florida. While there I found myself sailing as much as studying which led me to question my career path and where I wanted to be in 10 years. Although I unsure of many things, I was certain I wanted to live and work on the water, doing what I love. I am currently a fourth year at the University of Alabama studying business with hopes to someday get into Marine management. After three summers as a student with Sail Caribbean in the Charlie and Echo program, I was presented the opportunity to return as part of the staff team. While there I obtained my rescue diver certification, and am working towards becoming a dive master.
Growing up I spent most of my free time with family and friends on the Chesapeake Bay. Water sports particularly wake boarding has always been a hobby of mine and enabled me to teach my four siblings and many others how to enjoy them as well. Sail Caribbean has shown me more excitement and knowledge in the three summers I had been a student then all my other summers combine. Spending time sailing throughout the Caribbean creates an overall ambiance where gaining knowledge comes easy, the more I learned the more fun I had. The constant excitement to wake up each morning and see what the day held is what keeps me returning to Sail Caribbean. Along with the many water sports I consider hobbies, I spend much of my time riding motocross and playing polo. My family introduced me to the sport of polo as a child and enjoyed numerous summers teaching young teens to play. Something funny about me is that I enjoy spending time with adults and children as much as friends my age. I have 4 siblings one 12,17,18 and 25, and we all spend more time together than apart.