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Joyce Steinmetz

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  • Entered Program: 2009
  • Primary Track: Maritime Studies
  • Secondary Track(s): Social Sciences and Geological Sciences
  • Education:
    • BS Mechanical Engineering - Pennsylvania State University
    • BS Industrial Engineering and Management Systems - Pennsylvania State University
    • MA Maritime Studies - East Carolina University
  • E-mail:

Joyce Holmes Steinmetz grew up on a sailboat, racing on the Chesapeake Bay and cruising New England.  At 16, she fell in love with shipwreck diving off the mid-Atlantic coast. Seeking to support her expensive passion, Joyce graduated from Pennsylvania State University with bachelor degrees in mechanical and industrial engineering. She has had the opportunity to dive from Newfoundland to Brazil and west to Chuuk Lagoon, Bikini Atoll, and Queensland, Australia. Joyce is a certified technical, cave, and tri-mix diver, with blackwater experience. Linking primary archival records with on-site observations and measurements, Joyce identified three shipwrecks:  an 1870s merchant ship, an 1847 English side-wheel paddle steamer and Civil War blockade-runner, and an 1893 Great Lakes bulk carrier. After a successful career in project engineering and operations management in electronics, food, and chocolate manufacturing, Joyce is starting a marine archaeology career.


Joyce attended East Carolina University’s Masters Program in Maritime Studies, also known as Maritime History and Nautical Archaeology, and certified as a scientific diver. Building on the master’s program, Joyce’s primary Coastal Resources Management Ph.D. Program focus is Maritime Studies. Her research examines the structural and historical impacts of commercial fishing gear on shipwrecks and the economic impacts of shipwrecks on commercial fishing, seeking a mutually beneficial solution. Her professional interests lie in remote sensing technology and deepwater shipwrecks.