Professor teaches class from under the ocean

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- A College of Charleston geology professor is teaching a class from under the ocean. Professor Leslie Sautter of College of Charleston is currently on a research ship about 265 miles off the Oregon Coast.

Sautter is part of a team of Oceanographers exploring an underwater volcano that erupted in 2011. The team is on the University of Washington research vessel, Thomas G. Thompson.

The class will be watching one of a limited number of high definition video streams of Sautter's live broadcasts from the ship and under the ocean, where they will have the opportunity to interact with the scientists and engineers in real-time.

"It's cool that it's real life stuff that's happening right now," said Hollis Romanchik, a senior College of Charleston Marine and Biology student. "And her being out at sea just shows you what a day in the life or a marine geologist at sea would be."

"It's really neat that they're actually showing marine field work in something that's actually happening in the geology field right now," said Romanchik. "Shows a lot about what's happening in the real world."

All of the broadcasts are being taped, so that they may be used potentially by millions of students around the world. Sautter's marine geology class at the College of Charleston is the pilot classroom for this project, called VAST (VISIONS At-Sea Telepresence).