So maybe the female marine biologist (which I learned is a generic term – so she needs a specialty, which I can research later) is not a shy, studious person, but a bitchy tough girl hippie. Contradiction? Maybe. She was a surfer. She’s from California (yes these are generalizations and don’t be offended). She was traumatized by a shark but she’s brave or crazy to be studying the sharks, and in studying sharks, she is overcoming her fears and hopefully helping others.
According to some of the websites I’ve looked at for character archetypes (and yes – this is a quicky shortcut for character development. I know I could spend more than a week on one character. As I don’t have that time, I’m going with quick and dirty in hopes that will shake something loose in the inner-brain and that I have an “ah ha! I can do this” moment), she would be a Hero (who proves her self-worth through courageous acts) and a Caregiver (to protect and care for others) and an Explorer (finding out who she is by exploring the world). One website pointed out that the archetypes are not something your character is all the time. It’s more a part of the character arch. So JoJo starts out as a Caregiver who’s goal is to help others – but she has a weakness of being a doormat. She looses a few battles. She spends enough time in introspection that she morphs into an Explorer – trying to define herself by exploring the world, and in exploring, finds away to help herself and help others. Or she skips introspection and goes for the bravery and ends up a Hero, proving her worth through courageous acts. At heart, she still has a goal of helping others.

On the subject of Shark Biologist (or Marine Biologist who studies Sharks), I found this website:
The author says that the average person has a better chance of becoming the president of a fortune 500 company than in becoming a shark biologist. But luckily, I control this fictive world and the luck in it, so my hero is a Shark Biologist, who is in the field researching Great Whites (because they’re sexy), and discovers -along with a boat full of rowdy shark/treasure hunters – a never-seen-before shark species.

There are plenty of ethical, meticulous, hard working, thoroughly wonderful people working in shark research who do what they because they love it. But, far too often, the work of these dedicated scientists seems to be overwhelmed in the public eye by relatively few self-styled shark researchers who are unethical, methodologically sloppy, thoroughly untrustworthy ratbags and posers who care nothing for the ideals and practices of Science but do what they do because they want attention and adulation.

Oh yeah.

That never-seen-before shark? He’s got an agenda. He could join the crew and sabotage the research because he doesn’t want his people found.
And that crew? Our heroine doesn’t know that they’re a bunch of posers, or that the captain/crew leader is out to steal her research for his own glory. She thinks they’re allies, or at times, assistants in helping her capture all of the data.