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Meet our BLAKE GNS Ambassadors

Our People

27 March 2024


GNS is excited to have two BLAKE Ambassadors accompanying the final voyage to Whakaari/White and Tūhua/Mayor island volcanoes as part of the GNS-led Beneath the Waves programme.

Geology honours students Lottie Stow and Georgina Dempster will be on board the R/V Tangaroa to help deploy the last 39 of 200 Ocean Bottom Electromagnetic sensors (OBEMs) from 28 March to 12 April and keep track of the daily activities on the voyage.

Lottie Stow

Lottie grew up in Te Tai-o-Aorere, Tasman and is now studying an honours degree in geology at the University of Canterbury, with a focus on earthquake-induced landslides.

Lottie said she enjoys GIS, geography and mapping and is excited to learn about the structures of Whakaari on the upcoming voyage, as well as improving her knowledge of magma systems.

“I applied to go on the voyage because I was interested to learn about the science behind hazard identification and mitigation, as well as the techniques and people,” Lottie said.

“After the White Island disaster, the importance of learning about our environment resonated with me because we must connect and understand it. The Beneath the Waves programme is a super important element of this, being able to anticipate the effects an eruption could have on Aotearoa is something I feel privileged to be a (small) part of.

“I hope to learn how a research voyage works, the people involved, how I can hopefully be involved later on and further understand near-shore hazards like tsunamis or eruptions. The technology being used, like deployment of seabed instruments, is interesting to get involved with as I've never seen this before.

“I have a huge passion for science and am excited for where my career will take me. I hope one day to be on a research trip like this, mentoring someone like me! Hazard science is interesting to me, especially in our age because more and more communities are being affected by them.”

Georgina Dempster

Georgina grew up in Blenheim where she has enjoyed an active life of tramping, sailing, dance and football. She is now studying an honours degree in geology at the University of Otago where she is using collected seismic surveys to produce a model of the sediments at the bottom of Lake Wakatipu, Queenstown.

Georgina said she is interested in the environment, natural hazards, and geophysics and applied for the BLAKE GNS Ambassadorship as she thought it would be a good experience and also a bit of fun. 

“I hope to learn about different ways geophysical techniques can be used to image features that are below the surface of the ocean or land that can’t be directly observed such as the plumbing system of Whakaari/White Island,” Georgina said.

“I am also interested to see what it is like to be part of a research cruise. I would like to have a career in science, probably in geology or environmental science as I am really interested in how the world works, and how environments and hazards have changed through time.”

(L-R) Georgina in front of Franz Josef Glacier and Lottie on top of Mt Angelus in the Nelson Lakes National Park