Student Perspective | Viviane Wiedecke | MSc in Marine Science & Climate Change

The university offers numerous ways to engage with fellow students, from outdoor adventures and local excursions to social gatherings and cultural activities.
20th May 2024

What brought you to the University of Gibraltar?

A passion for the ocean has been a constant in my life ever since I started diving at the age of 11. After completing a BSc degree in Environmental and Resource Management, I worked as a dive instructor for three years. This experience made me even more passionate about the wonders of the underwater world, so I started exploring options for a master’s degree to deepen my understanding of oceanographic processes, marine ecosystems, and conservation efforts, among others. While working in the Maldives, the on-site marine biologist, who had graduated from the University of Gibraltar, recommended the course to me.
The unique combination of marine sciences and climate change offered by the University of Gibraltar’s MSc programme immediately piqued my interest as to me. To me, an interdisciplinary approach that includes these two fields is crucial. Furthermore, the university’s location between the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean provides an exceptional environment for research and learning. Additionally, the proximity to Spain offered an opportunity to further improve my Spanish skills. What truly solidified my decision was the welcoming nature of the university staff. The head of school and other staff members were incredibly supportive and responsive to all my questions, providing a level of personal support that I found very reassuring. This tight-knit community and the promise of state-of-the-art study programme convinced me that the UniGib was the perfect place to pursue my MSc in Marine Sciences and Climate Change.

How has your experience of the programme and the university been so far?

My experience at the UniGib has been incredibly enriching. The variety of teaching and learning methods, including in-class exercises, extended essays, seminar presentations, and project work, has offered me a comprehensive educational experience. The programme includes a variety of fieldwork, which has provided us with several practical and applicable skills and has taught us to apply theoretical knowledge in real-world settings. Overall, participatory learning forms the core of all activities, which fosters a supportive and interactive environment.
In my small cohort, we are a diverse and international group, with students from Africa, North America, South America, Asia, and Europe. The cultural diversity brings a variety of approaches, experiences, and opinions to our class discussions and has broadened my horizons and challenged my viewpoints. The interactions with my peers have been a key part of my learning experience, making each day in class interesting and insightful.
The supervisors and staff are always eager to help, focussing on improving our weaknesses and building on our strengths. Their dedication to each student’s growth is truly noticeable, as they tailor their support to meet our personal needs by providing personal and effective guidance. This approach has not only helped me academically but also contributed to my personal growth. The holistic learning experience at the University of Gibraltar goes beyond academics, equipping us with the relevant knowledge and skills necessary for our future goals. I feel well-prepared for the challenges ahead, thanks to the university’s comprehensive support and dedication to student success.

‘The holistic learning experience at the University of Gibraltar goes beyond academics, equipping us with the relevant knowledge and skills necessary for our future goals. I feel well-prepared for the challenges ahead, thanks to the university’s comprehensive support and dedication to student success.’

How have you found student life at the University of Gibraltar?

Student life at the University of Gibraltar has been a lot of fun. The university offers numerous ways to engage with fellow students, from outdoor adventures and local excursions to social gatherings and cultural activities. There’s always something to participate in. Additionally, I cherish the natural beauty of Gibraltar and enjoy spending time at its beautiful beaches and hiking up the Rock of Gibraltar for sunrise. Weekend trips to explore different parts of Spain have added an extra layer of adventure to my student life. Overall, my time at UniGib has been incredibly enriching. I have made true friendships and can’t wait to see where everyone’s life leads them.

What are your career goals and ambitions?

My career goals are centred around marine conservation. For my dissertation, I am working on establishing the first-ever coral restoration project in Gibraltar waters. The project focuses on revitalising local populations of the orange cup coral. With my background in diving, I would like to combine the knowledge I have gained from this programme and my thesis project with my diving skills to participate in restoration projects around the world. Furthermore, specific assignments focusing on stakeholder and public engagement during my studies have been particularly enjoyable, which is why I envision a career where I can merge hands-on restoration work with science communication to raise awareness and promote conservation efforts globally.
  • MSc

    Master in Marine Science & Climate Change

    Designed and delivered by expert academics and scientists, this full or part-time interdisciplinary programme blends theoretical study with practical, field-based work. You will cover specialist subject areas and gain the skills required to tackle the complex issues associated with the sustainable development of marine ecosystems.[...]

    1 Year

    No Placement option

    Full Time

    View Course