Rockstar of the Month!
Michaella Sena is a member of the Okeanos™ marketing department. Her dedication, hard work, passion for the environment, and her beautiful personality make her a joy to work with. Michaella’s background in advertising and Spanish is a huge asset to the Okeanos team.
1) What is your favorite part about working with Okeanos?
The passion of this community – when I come into work, I feel like I’m with friends. We’re all working together toward something greater, we can talk freely about our ideas…
and we get excited about what everyone has to offer. To me, that’s what work should be like!
2) How would you describe Okeanos’ mission to others?
What do you think is the most valuable aspect of this mission?
I believe our mission is to save our one ocean. It connects all of us, and even someone who has no immediate connection with the it is still provided with oxygen essential for all life. We want to reduce plastic pollution as soon and as quickly as we can. The idea of “now” is what sets us apart. We see companies promising change by 2025 or 2050, but there’s not that much time – our climate crisis needs to change now, and that’s what we do at Okeanos. We promise the best we can now and if we can make it better as we continue to develop and grow, then we will! It’s better to make change in this moment, than to wait.
3) How do your personal and professional strengths contribute to Okeanos’ overall success? How would you leverage you major in advertising to make the difference and drive impact?
I’ve always loved learning; in fact, I often joke around about how I’d be a great professional student. I think this is what helps me every day at Okeanos – it allows me to learn more and more about the plastic problem, and how to share that with others through the work we do at Okeanos. I have said from day one I don’t want to advertise anything that I don’t believe in. I want to advertise in a place that changes our future for the better. In advertising, you can’t do what everyone else is and you have to think about the future. Okeanos technology is the future and I have the knowledge, skills, and team to make sure it impacts the world.
4) In what way has Okeanos impacted your everyday life? Is sustainability apart of your personal life?
It validates so much of what I believe in, and that’s huge. To be surrounded by likeminded people and have the science and technology to make the change gives me hope for the future and a reason to keep speaking up for our planet each day. Sustainability is a big part of my daily life and though I’m not perfect, I try my best to pick up trash I find on the beach or in parks, share environmental news on social media, and not eat meat to reduce methane, fossil fuels, and water consumption. Did you know it takes more than 2,400 gallons of water to produce one pound of meat? That’s insane!
5) What (or who) has inspired you to take action to reduce single-use plastic? How long ago was it?
I’ve been an animal lover for my whole life – I had a jungle themed room as a kid, I owned pet snakes, birds, toads, turtles, lizards, cats, and dogs. I grew up boating and being on the water every weekend. Seeing injured or endangered marine life at the hands of humans really upset me. It’s animal life that inspires me because they didn’t choose for humans to destroy their habitats, so I want to make the change they need for a proper life. I also think about my nephews a lot and I want them to grow up in world filled with all animals and ecosystems. Sustainability is the act of doing something now that will not harm future generations and I think that pushes me as an adult to keep a beautiful world for them too!
6) Do you have any advice for those who want to start reducing their plastic waste?
Yes! Choose something that is realistic for you in your everyday life whether that’s not using produce bags, choosing to use a reusable water bottle, or picking up trash you walk past each day. If everyone makes a small change, it makes a huge impact. No matter where you are in your sustainability journey, you can make a difference.
7) What role do you think social media plays in helping people make more sustainable choices?
To me, it has a hugely positive impact! I follow many sustainable living accounts and climate activists. I see how people are influenced to make the change from what is being shared. Yes, there will be haters and non-believers, but that’s with most things in life. Change is coming and one negative comment is not stopping the fight for a more sustainable future.
8) Tell us about a time you felt at one with nature and a quote you wish to share with the world.
Anytime I’m outside, especially on the water, I feel one with nature. We would often sail, and there would be dolphins jumping alongside the boat. In the winter months, we’d be greeted by manatees in our canal. We would drop in a hose to give them fresh water to drink and rub their bellies. These were special moment when I felt the most connected. I want to leave everyone with my favorite quote from Salvador Dalí: “Intelligence without ambition, is a bird without wings.” This quote speaks for itself and perfectly encapsulates what I’ve been talking about throughout this interview: educate yourself on your passion and share it with the world.