Nicole Hellessey

PhD researcher, Institute for Marine and Antarctic, University of Tasmania


Never give up. Never surrender.

What do you do?

I'm an Antarctic Marine Scientist. I study small shrimp-like animals called krill that live in Antarctica. I look at the fats and oils in the krill to see what they eat. I also use information from the environment to help me find out how krill diets might change as the environment changes.

Why did you choose this field?

I always wanted to study Marine Science ever since I was 7 and had dreams of being a dolphin trainer at Seaworld. When I finally got to University to study Marine Science I took a course on Antarctic Ecology and that was it.

What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?

I wish I could tell younger Nicole that she will get to go to Antarctica twice in the same year. I think the fact she gets to go would blow her away, but twice in a single year, incredible.

Why do you love working in STEM?

I love working in STEM because everyday is different and every job or thing I study can be so unique from the last. I'm constantly learning and asing questions, I never get stuck doing the same thing everyday. I love that, not knowing what you'll be doing today.

Best advice for next generation?

Never give up, never surrender. There will be tough days, really tough days, days where you want to quit. Sometimes you need to know that giving up is an option but not for you. You can get up and try again and you might make it this time, there might be a different way to get there, but just keep trying.

Inspo quote / fun fact / role model

I got to swim in the caldera of an active volcano in Antarctica and was told to eat ice cream for 7 weeks straight for science!

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