Katarina is an IT specialist and she is responsible for everything IT related on board the ship. She has been involved in building the infrastructure for all the computers on board, sorting out all the connections and wires between all the different machines and computers. She managed all the data collected on the ship from places such as the ROV (Remotely Operated Vehicles). She also makes back-ups of all the data collected onto discs which then get sent back to the shore as records in case anything happens to the data on board.
What do you enjoy most about your job on the Black Sea MAP?
I have never done anything like this before. I would normally work in an office so this experience is great. It’s absolutely amazing being onboard, meeting all the people. Seeing what everyone else is doing is the most interesting part for me.
What did you study at school?
I attended a high school in Slovakia that focussed on economics, management and languages.
What did you do after school?
When I was 18 I started working at HP (Hewlett-Packard, software company). A few years later I decided it was time to do my university studies, so I studied at the weekends. I now have two degrees – a Masters degree in international business management and a degree in marketing management.
What influenced you into going into this line of work?
My dad is an IT administrator and I have always been interested in IT since I was a kid.
What skills would you say you need to best do your job?
I would say willingness to learn because IT is a subject that changes often, so you have to keep up and learn every day. If you are willing to accept that and keep learning you can do anything you want!
How does your work fit in with all the other engineering and science work that goes on in the project?
I’m basically building the foundation for single person on the ship to be able to work. (Are you the person that they call on if everything breaks down?) Yes, in effect, because I must connect everything. I’m interconnecting all the departments making sure the data is distributed accordingly (and) I’m allowing people to do their jobs.
Do you have any advice for people that would like to go into IT or other STEM careers?
Go for it! Technology is the future and there are so many advances in technology. You may have the opportunity to come for projects like (Black Sea MAP) because there will always be need for technology for all the other work to happen.