Q&A with ‘Dive with the Bull Sharks’ contest winner Trae Taylor
The Oklahoma Aquarium is hosting the third-annual “Dive with the Bull Sharks” event at 7 p.m. Friday.
Trae Taylor, of Wewoka, is the contest winner this year. Taylor is also a volunteer at the Oklahoma Aquarium.
Taylor’s name was randomly drawn from hundreds of entries from across the country. There were entries stretching from Hawaii and Alaska to the east coast.
The Oklahoma Aquarium has the largest amount of bull sharks in the world in their shark tank.
The Jenks Tribune recently had a question and answer session with Taylor, as he prepares for the dive.
Jenks Tribune: What was your initial reaction when you found out you had been selected?
Trae Taylor: My initial reaction was immediate shock. As a volunteer, I did not think the odds were in my favor. With so much passion for the Aquarium and all marine life, I was very grateful.
JT: How long have your volunteered at the Oklahoma Aquarium and what other tanks have your have the chance to dive?
TT: I have volunteered at the Oklahoma Aquarium for nearly a year. I do not get to come as often as I want because I am a full-time student at Oklahoma State University. When I do come, I dive in the Polynesian tank and Sea Turtle tank.
JT: What are you looking forward to the most about the dive?
TT: I have been fascinated with sharks my entire life. Simply, I am most excited about the creatures themselves. I have been coming to the Oklahoma Aquarium since I was a young boy and I always dreamed of diving in this tank. Now, it is actually happening.
JT: Are you mostly excited or is there a little nervousness since you will be diving with sharks?
TT: I am excited because I know sharks are not creatures to be feared. They are very fascinating, and I feel no nervousness, just very grateful for the opportunity to be in their presence.
JT: Do you feel you are prepared for this experience? How will this experience help you advance your career?
TT: As a shark fanatic, I believe I am very prepared. I know a lot about sharks and any experience diving with them will get me to my ultimate goal of working at an aquarium and doing research on the fascinating species.
The Jenks Tribune will have full coverage following Taylor’s Friday dive with the bull sharks.