President's Slate
February 2024

This week started a new semester for students here at UM. Though their excitement was tempered a bit by the swim tests, they rebounded well and are ready to go for the semester. They have big dreams of helping restore coral and finding new behaviors of sharks. I remember being in their shoes almost 18 years ago; so excited and ready to save the world through scientific diving! At that point, I didn’t know what I didn’t know. My knowledge of scientific diving was minuscule, and I was about to embark on the most transformative adventure and career imaginable. I wonder what the future holds for all the students across the country that are taking their first steps into the world of scientific diving. How will these divers impact our community and knowledge base? Which of these new divers will eventually take our places as lead scientists, DSOs, and AAUS board members? Just a fun thing to think about….
As for future AAUS BOD members, this could be you! The AAUS Nomination Committee is accepting nominations for President-elect and one Director-at-large position until March 30th. This is a perfect opportunity to get involved on the frontline of scientific diving, and we would love to have you onboard! Please reach out to Jim Hayward as he is leading this charge.  
We were a bit delayed in opening the comment periods for the standards and bylaws changes. Good intentions don’t always match the timeline of formatting documents. However, these documents are open now! Based on feedback received during the Standards Townhall and comments gathered throughout 2023, the Standards Committee has put forth the changes for everyone to review and comment within a 60-day timeframe. The Bylaws Ad Hoc committee has also put forth bylaws’ changes for review and comment. Many of the changes are for clarification purposes while others are edits recommended after a legal review to tidy up language and to accurately reflect how business is conducted. Please take the time to read and comment on both documents. Your voice is valued!

Registration for the spring 2024 AAUS Diving for Science Symposium is well underway. Please join us 14-20 April in Fort Pierce, FL. The workshops are diverse and plentiful, so check them out before they fill up. Abstracts are also being accepted. Please read below for more details on abstract submission. This is a great opportunity to present your work to our community! 

I cherish the symposium as it’s a chance to be in the same place to catch up with old friends, meet new people, and exchange ideas. Communication is so much easier when we are all in the same time zone! Events like this strengthen our community and allow us to grow. I look forward to seeing you there. 

Jessica Keller 
AAUS President





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