Andreas Teske earned a master’s degree in biochemistry in his native Germany. After deciding to seek work that allowed exotic field trips, he spent a year in the cornfields at the University of Illinois, focusing on microbial evolution and diversity, before joining the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology for his Ph.D. on microorganisms of the marine sulfur cycle. In 1996, his fascination with new and unusual hydrothermal vent microorganisms brought him to WHOI, as a postdoctoral scholar with the late Holger Jannasch and then as assistant scientist in the Biology Department. At WHOI, he became interested in the diversity and biogeochemical activity of microbes living in massive seafloor sediment layers. Teske now pursues the emerging field of deep-subsurface microbiology at the Department of Marine Sciences at the University of North Carolina, but he and his family return to Woods Hole every summer to keep up collaborations, and to sample Woods Hole’s famous microbial life.