Graduate profile - Maya Plass

BSc (Hons) Marine Biology and Coastal Ecology

The course acted as a springboard for my career and a network of contacts for work in the future. Through its diversity, it also gave me an opportunity to see what aspects of marine ecology I really wanted to follow. I never expected my career would be so varied and exciting although I obviously hoped it would be. My careers advisor at school advised me not to follow a career in marine biology for fear of lack of employment; I am glad to say that I have categorically proven him wrong!

Plymouth's coastline

My love of the sea started young - rockpooling and playing on my local beach - and with this, my fascination for the ecology of our seas grew. I chose to do the BSc (Hons) Marine Biology and Coastal Ecology because it would help answer many of the unanswered questions I had about our marine environment. I wasn't disappointed! I chose Plymouth because of the quality of the coastline and also the potential to work with many marine institutions in the area: I worked part time at the National Marine Aquarium during my studies. 

MSc in Integrated Coastal Zone Management

I went on from my degree to study for an MSc in Integrated Coastal Zone Management with a work placement in coastal Argentina. Following on from this experience, and with my new understanding of the marine industry, I then worked in environmental management within the local council which was a really useful and enjoyable start to my career. However, in 2008 I finally realised my life ambition to set up a marine education facility - Learn to Sea - based in South Devon. This has been an amazing experience. It is incredibly rewarding to offer local people and tourists of all ages an opportunity to share my knowledge and passion for the sea. I really believe that marine education is a fundamental requirement of marine conservation.

Learn to Sea

“I never expected my career would be so varied and exciting”
My work as director of Learn to Sea has also given me various other incredible opportunities. In 2010 I was asked to be guest presenter for BBC 'Autumnwatch'. This was a wonderful opportunity to share my knowledge of the seas with a larger audience. I was also selected to take part in an international marine education leadership course on Midway Atoll, North Western Hawaiian Islands. It was an invaluable experience to draw on for my work within marine education - particularly marine litter.