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Ghanaian goat becomes Semester at Sea’s first ship pet

Students brought a new friend on board today, and it wasn’t exactly on the visitor’s list. After spending a day at the beach, a group of voyagers bonded with a lone billy goat that has quickly become Spring 2018’s favorite community member.

Students playing with Odysseus on deck

“We decided to name it Odysseus since it’s the first animal on the Odyssey,” said student Brent Van Brocklin. “He’s pretty dope.”

Van Brocklin and a group of voyagers decided to beat the heat and hit the surf after celebrating Easter Sunday. The day was slipping into the afternoon when the students found the goat and they were hurrying to get back for on-ship time.

“We were just hanging out on the beach when this goat came out of nowhere and laid down next to me,” said student Miranda Daly. “He was so cute, he just stayed with us the entire afternoon, and when we tried to leave, he followed us back to our cab. He was bleating really sadly and we realized we couldn’t just leave him behind.”

Students convinced their cab driver to add an extra passenger and called dean John Burkoff to explain the situation. Burkoff was absolutely against the idea until Odysseus showed up at the ship and he actually interacted with the goat.

“The moment I saw him, I thought ‘that is the cutest animal I have ever seen,’ Burkoff said. “I immediately understood where the students were coming from and decided to take it up with Captain Kostas.”

Burkoff insisted the captain see the goat before he made a decision. At first, the captain refused to entertain the idea, but the moment he set eyes on Odysseus, he had a change of heart.

“My heart melted when I saw his face,” the captain said. “Besides my wife and children, that goat is the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.”

After lots of conversations with immigration and mountains of paperwork, Odysseus was brought on as the Odyssey’s newest voyager, complete with a ship ID.

“We love Odysseus, a ship pet is definitely what needed for these last couple legs of the voyage,” said student Emma Ismail. “We need a therapy animal to get through finals. And he is super, super cute.”

We can’t think of a better way to celebrate April Fool’s Day.

  • Student Life

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