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This week we present two stories from people who owe a debt of gratitude to somebody for their entrance into the science community.

Part 1: A chance meeting with a stranger on an airplane has a huge impact on Melanie Knight's life.

Part 2: Joshua Adams-Miller has never seen college in his future, until he receives encouragement from an unexpected source.

Melanie Knight is CEO and Co-Founder of Ocean to Eye Level Consulting which supports coastal communities around the world open public marine education centres. Melanie is also the founder and past Executive Director of the Petty Harbour Mini Aquarium, a non-profit education centre in Newfoundland. Melanie had the opportunity to share her story of ‘bringing the ocean to eye level on the TEDx stage in Vancouver, November 2014. Melanie graduated from Memorial University of Newfoundland with a BSc. in Biology and a minor in Business. For the past 10 years, Melanie has been working with the largest and the smallest aquariums in Canada fostering curiosity for the underwater world. Melanie worked at the Vancouver Aquarium as a marine educator and manager of volunteers. Melanie has since been recognized for her work environmental work with the Petty Harbour Mini Aquarium becoming a Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographic Society, receiving the Newfoundland and Labrador Environmental Award, TechGirls Portraits of Strength and the Canadian Network of Environmental Educators Award in 2014. She lives in Vancouver with her husband and K9.

Joshua Adams-Miller was born in 1989, in Sun Valley Idaho, to a family that has been in Idaho since 1873. He grew up in SE Boise under the care of his mother, who provided him more opportunities than anyone could ask for. However, he developed a sense of independence very early. Whether he was riding the city bus alone at 10 years old to get home from summer school programs or organizing large groups of friend to sneak out in the middle of the night, he’s always had a curious mind, and it wasn't beyond him to break the rules if it meant he got to learn something. He has always loved music and learned the viola and saxophone in school and self taught himself the piano and guitar. In his teens, he was sent to a jazz camp on a scholarship to hone his skills on the piano. Over his life, his curiosities have drawn him to the sciences repeatedly but by no means was it a clear path that brought him to his studies at Boise State as a Material Science Engineering Major. Like a sunrise, slowly illuminating the horizon, he realized that the best way for him to contribute to the future he wants to see was to bring to the world the materials that will make it possible.

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