WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- As Hurricane Sandy rages toward our neighbors to the north, some students from Wilmington are happy to be home.
Cape Fear Community College Marine Technology students faced some rough seas on their research trip, but thanks to some careful planning, the Research Vessel Dan Moore made it home safe and sound through Hurricane Sandy.
It was smooth sailing on the Marine Technology Program's eight-day trip north to Baltimore last week. The trip home was a different story.
"We knew absolutely that we were not going to be venturing back out into the ocean and try to get around Cape Hatteras on the way south where Sandy was on her way for a direct collision course with us," Capt. Steve Beuth said.
The 14 students and crew took the Intracoastal Waterway back to Wilmington to avoid raging seas and roaring winds. Capt. Beuth says after all his years on the water, he has never made the trip down the ICW, especially during such a strong storm.
"There was a lot of drama on this voyage, but it was a great learning experience for not only the students but for every one of us," Beuth said.
Student Dave Supa says he was excited to have traveled through the storm.
"Of course it was a little windy and it was also raining, but overall it was a great experience; something that I'm going to take with me, put in my back pocket as a good resumé builder and say I've been through a couple different things," Supa said.
Supa says he never felt unsafe on the trip thanks to the experience and steady compass of the CFCC crew.
"With the R/V Dan Moore's crew and Capt. Beuth, I'm in the best hands," Supa said. "I felt safer on the Dan Moore in the middle of a tropical storm than I do driving down College Road."
The Marine Technology program takes trips like this every semester to give students real life experiences. Although students could not do all the activities planned, most say the hurricane made up for it.