Applications open for Students on Ice Arctic expedition

“Students learn through the lens of science, art, history, policy and culture.”

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Students on Ice participants journey through Itilleq, a settlement in the Qeqqata municipality in Greenland, last July. (Martin Lipman / Students on Ice via Nunatsiaq News)

Hungry for glacial adventure and a snowy summer tour? That could be just an application form away.

Students on Ice is looking for high school and post-secondary students from across the Arctic and around the world to apply for its 2019 Arctic expedition.

This summer’s expedition is scheduled from July 21 until Aug. 7.

The 120 secondary and post-secondary students selected for the expedition will get to travel with 80 staff members. Among them will be scientists, elders, artists, musicians, dignitaries and historians.

These students will be selected based on potential impact, rather than credentials or previous leadership experience.

Caitlyn Baikie, the organization’s Arctic youth and partnerships program manager, said they are looking for students who perhaps have never left their community, or whose life and career choices could be broadened by the expedition.

“I think what makes this program unique is that it brings together youth from all over the world for a two-week time frame,” Baikie said.

“There is nothing else like this in the world, that brings together such a diverse group of people to such a remote location.”

Over the two weeks, students may find themselves exploring a glacier, kayaking, encountering flora and fauna, or just getting out to visit a community.

The group tries to get off the ship as often as possible, when the weather permits, depending on where they are at the time, Baikie said.

The expedition itinerary also includes workshops and panel discussions that will offer opportunities for students to learn about climate change, traditional knowledge and scientific research.

“Students learn through the lens of science, art, history, policy and culture, grounded in an understanding and appreciation for the people who call the Arctic home. They share and connect to their peers, the expedition educators, and the land and waters around them,” said Students on Ice’s website.

Beginning in Ottawa, expedition members will fly to Kangerlussuaq, Greenland, where the group will set sail to communities, fiords, bays and islands along the country’s west coast, including Ilulissat Icefjord, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

The ship will then cross the Davis Strait to get to Canada. From there, the group will visit Sirmilik National Park and Pikialasorsuaq, before going to the Northwest Passage and Tallurutiup Imanga, Canada’s largest national marine conservation area.

The expedition will end in Resolute Bay, to board charter flights back to Ottawa.

The deadline to submit the Arctic 2019 application form is 11:59 p.m on Feb. 17. Application forms and information about how to apply can be found on the Students on Ice website.

Full scholarships are available for most participants.