Anyone who spends time at the Station knows it gets under one's skin. In a few special instances, this description is as literal as it is metaphorical.
"It definitely hurt," says Emily Tuchman. "I would never consider getting any other tattoo, but UMBS has meant more to me than any other life experience." Tuchman, a junior at Loyola University, got a tattoo of the UMBS logo on her heel in August, 2012. She says she is "fortunate enough to have spent every summer of my life at UMBS," where her mother, Nancy, was an instructor and still conducts research.
Bug Camper Megan Lung joined Tuchman on the tattoo trip. "Emily joked about it and then we just followed through with it," she says. Her UMBS tattoo is above her left knee. Like Tuchman, Lung says the Station has deep personal meaning for her. "I quit being pre-med right before I went up [to UMBS]. Then I was there and I found my place, what I want to do with my life." Now a senior in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Michigan, Lung plans to attend graduate school in a biology field.
Tattoos are fairly mainstream these days. A study published in the June, 2006, Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology found that nearly a quarter of people under the age of 50 have at least one tattoo. For men and women between the ages of 18 and 29, the percent was thirty-six.
The UMBS community is no exception. Plenty of residents have tattoos. Even science- or Michigan-themed tats are not all that uncommon. Professor Steve Pruett-Jones has a tattoo of a fairy wren, one of his study species, on his left shoulder. Alumnus and TA Adam Schubel has a map of Michigan (both peninsulas) inked on his right arm.
In choosing a UMBS-specific tattoo, however, Tuchman and Lung joined a very exclusive group. Only one other person is known to sport a logo tattoo. That individual wishes to remain anonymous.
If you have a Biological Station or science tattoo you'd like to share, please post a picture on our Facebook wall. For more science ink inspiration, visit this collection on the National Geographic website.