We loved having Megan Pickard with us this summer for a 6 week internship, she helped us with so many different projects including the 100% fish program and it´s international work, events around fish leather in fashion as well as many other projects. Alongside this she was brought her great energy and attitude to our team and will be missed!

Hear about her internship in her own words below:

I have thoroughly enjoyed my 6-week internship at the Iceland Ocean Cluster (IOC), where I have been able to get involved in a variety of exciting projects, learnt new skills and meet many interesting people in a similar field. Outside the workplace, I have made the most of the nature in Iceland, with my personal highlight being able to visit the newest volcanic eruption, Litli Hrutir, and also swimming between the tectonic plates at Silfra. I also met lots of interesting people, including having coffee with the British Ambassador.

Primarily, my focus was the ongoing 100% Fish project, where the IOC are working alongside the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Governors and Premiers in the U.S to improve full fish utilisation and production of value-added products – a project that is already successful in Iceland. My work involved research and spatial mapping of the current state of knowledge globally on seafood loss and waste, and where along the value chain most losses occur. Additionally, current fish bioprocessing facilities were mapped globally and the proximity of important places (e.g. waste management, airports, harbours etc), to highlight the importance of good location when setting up a new facility in the Great Lakes. Research and development facilities and equipment were also mapped through research and interviews with people in industry (e.g. Cawthron/Breið). It was great to be a part of a project that is helping to implement more sustainable and economically beneficial practices at a large scale.

I was also involved in research into land-based aquaculture and eco-business parks across the EU and learnt about the process and application for Horizon Europe and COST Action proposal. This allowed me to deepen my understanding of the importance of the circular economy in the reuse of waste across all sectors to reduce footprint. I was also able to improve my graphic design skills, where I was involved in designing leaflets, posters, logos and websites for projects and events at the IOC.

As a university student, this was a great opportunity for me to experience life in the workplace, surrounded by people interested and working in a similar sector, where I was able to further improve my communication and networking skills. Additionally, I was able to act as a facilitator in the Hack the Ocean Co-Location morning, where my team communication skills were used to prompt discussion among a group.