Students and Professors in the Siberian Arctic: Video Provides Glimpse of the 2009 Field Course
The Polaris Project, a month-long field course held in July 2009 in the Siberian Arctic, offered future leaders in arctic research and education firsthand insights into the impacts of climate change. This 10-minute video introduces several of the Polaris Project participants and documents aspects of the field experience in the Siberian Arctic.
Dr. R. Max Holmes, a senior scientist at the Woods Hole Research Center and director of the Polaris Project, says, “The Arctic is central to the global climate change issue, and Russia has by far the largest share of the Arctic. Yet few western scientists, much less students, ever get the chance to work in the Siberian Arctic. This research experience is a unique collaboration among students, educators, and scientists from distinct cultures working together to address a critically important scientific challenge.”
Holmes adds, “The education and outreach aspects of this project are essential goals given the rapid and profound transformations underway in the Arctic in response to global warming.”
This was the second year of the Polaris Project field course. The focus of the students’ and scientists’ work was on the transport and transformations of carbon and nutrients as they move with water from terrestrial uplands to the Arctic Ocean, with an emphasis on the linkages among the different ecosystems, and how processes occurring in one component influence the others.
In addition to the field course, The Polaris Project includes research experience for undergraduate students in the Siberian Arctic, several new arctic-focused undergraduate courses taught by project co-primary investigators (PIs) at their home institutions, the opportunity for those co-PIs to initiate research programs in the Siberian Arctic, and a wide range of outreach activities.
Participating institutions include The Woods Hole Research Center, Carleton College, Clark University, Holy Cross College, St. Olaf College, University of Nevada – Reno, Western Washington University, and Yakustk State University. The project is supported by a grant from NSF.
For more information, please visit www.thepolarisproject.org.