Thursday, March 9, 2023
Mackay and Whitsunday Life
A marine biology expert is being recognised for her efforts in inspiring the next generation of scientists through an award-winning university-port partnership.
North Queensland Bulk Ports Corporation (NQBP) Senior Environmental Advisor Nicola Stokes has been designing targeted programs for marine science students at James Cook University (JCU), which allow them to gain real-world experience in the port industry while relating their studies to environmental aspects at ports.
“My role is to design a targeted program for each student where they can be involved in the many diverse operations and environmental aspects at ports and relate their studies to real world experiences,” Ms Nicola Stokes said.
“Students are mentored by a range of environmental management and planning experts at NQBP while undergoing their marine science studies.
“They gain practical skills beyond the classroom which can help shape their career direction.”
Ms Stokes said helping future marine scientists is one of her most rewarding roles.
"I enjoy interacting with younger generations and sharing my knowledge and passion for learning,” she said.
“It is very fulfilling to see marine science students taking an interest in the diversity and interconnectedness of port environments and see their eyes open to the opportunities available.”
Ms Stokes shares her passion for the maritime industry with students and urges them to consider working in the industry.
“The maritime industry offers opportunities that people often overlook, with many different paths taking you around the world,” she said.
“As women progress from their tertiary education into their maritime careers it is important to create an empowering space for them.”
North Queensland Bulk Ports Corporation (NQBP) Senior Environmental Advisor Nicola Stokes
Ms Stokes with student Jordan Wells. Photos supplied