Alumni Spotlight: Anna Sabrina Petry


Anna Sabrina Petry travelled to Australia after she finished school in Germany. She lived on a diveboat for 3 months and did her divemaster during that time. She travelled all the way down the east coast from Cairns to Melbourne and also the Great Ocean road. After she spent one more month in the Fijis, where she worked for GVI and did her Coral Reef research Diver, she returned home after 6 months of travelling.

Why did you choose this program?

Since I was 10 years old I wanted to become a marine biologist. When I has was 15 I did my Open Water Diver and from this moment on I knew I wanted to do diving for the rest of my life. I choose the GVI marine conservation program to learn more about Marine biology and what we can do about climate change, pollution and overfishing. I really wanted to be part of something really useful and do something for the world I live in and love.

What did your program provider assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

I booked this program because I travelled to Australia before and had my flight directly from Melbourne to Fiji. My program provider sent me lots of information before the program about the location, the work I have to do, the organization and program itself and also what I should bring with me. That was really useful and helped me to be prepared. I still had to buy lots of stuff by myself but there was also the possibility to do so on the way to our Island.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

Take everything as it comes! Try new things, accept the other living standards, culture and food. Just try to enjoy everything and see it as a new adventure. Try to make every day special and recognizable for yourself because you will definitely miss it when you are back home. There will be things you like and other things you can not stand but it is the experience which you should enjoy.

What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?

Early Start, every morning at 6:30 am you have a duty to do. There are 4 Duty Groups:
Boat, galley, waste and grounds. In this tiny island things need to be clean and organized. The Duty Groups help to get everything ready to start the day. At 7 am is breakfast, 12 pm lunchtime and at 19 pm Dinner. In between we have dives, beach cleans, data entry, snorkels and community work.

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it?

My biggest fear was to be lonely. I was worried that I would not find others with the same interests or the same way of thinking. I changed a lot during my travelling and it opened up my eyes for new ways of thinking, now i can not understand why i was worried, there was no reason for this. I met so many beautiful and mindful people. I have so much respect for all the people and their stories.

Did you encounter any dangerous situations?

I will not lie...there were moments where I didn't know where I would sleep that night or if I would get home safely . My travel was adventurous, I travelled with people I did not know, to be honest there were lots of possibilities where bad things could have happened to me. I was lucky and I believed in myself that I was able to get through it safely.