"I gained a better understanding of the practices implemented in the North of Norway, specifically as they relate to resource management and governance. One thing from the regional economic development class really sticks out: it can make more financial sense for businesses in the same geographic region to cooperate rather than complete with each other. For example, rather than trying to attract the customer to your place of business, attract them to your region so everyone can benefit. I have since applied this lesson directly to my own business here in Alaska and have already seen real benefits."
Matthew Balazs UiT the Arctic University of Norway, spring 2008; University Centre in Svalbard, summer 2009. Read the full story here.
"I was thrilled to discover that Tromsø has a wonderful ice hockey community. From the day that I arrived. I was welcomed, and had the honor of participating in one of the most defining communities of my youth. I was fortunate enough to return the following autumn to debut with Tromsø Hockey in the Norwegian Second Division. I developed my leadership skills through volunteering and working part time as an ice hockey coach. By further progressing my network in Norway, I was later able to work with Norwegian Red Cross, the Tromsø Kommune, restaurants and cafes, and, most excitingly, as a northern lights tour guide for Arctic Explorers. These years in Norway have also allowed me tackle a Master's degree in natural resource management."
David Broome UiT the Arctic University of Norway, spring 2013. Read the full story here.
"A long-lasting and rewarding aspect of participating in UArctic Thematic Network courses was the connections made with other students and faculty from around the Circumpolar North, and the opportunity to learn about the local cultures. I can still taste the musk ox from celebratory end-of-class dinner in Sisimiut, hear the laughter from favorite jokes told over dessert in Mirny, and see the March light shining through the circle of flags representing the eight Arctic nations at the Model Arctic Council in Fairbanks. The courses exposed me to new ideas, places and people, which led to a broader understanding of the diversity, and the surprising similarities, of life around the Circumpolar North."
Anne Rittgers Mirny, February 2016; Fairbanks, March 2016; Sisimiut, October 2017. Read the full story here.
"My ticket to Alaska and UAF was truly life-changing. I was welcomed back to start a PhD at UAF, and it was also totally unexpected that I found my new home and husband of 15 an 10 years, respectively. I became a US citizen in 2009 and have now a seven-year-long career as a soft-money researcher where I write grants to do what I want to do. I love the combination of being surrounded by top-north Arctic researchers a ten-minute drive from my home, while being able to lose cell phone reception less than half-hour drive away. It fells like a luxury to have my permafrost hydrology field site down the hill and my glacier studies viewed from my kitchen table."
Anna Liljedahl University of Alaska Fairbanks, August 2004 - August 2005. Read the full story here.
"Besides learning a great deal about geology that year, I learned that it really doesn't hurt to ask for things that you want; that's how I was able to stay for a second term. Also, you can get renewed enjoyment in things that may start to seem mundane to you by sharing with people who are unfamiliar with it. Currently I work as an underground production geologist at Pogo Mine in interior Alaska. Everyday we open up new ground, and it feels special to be somewhere where many people have not travelled to. I continue traveling and exploring new parts of Alaska and the world. My exchange gave me the confidence to do that, knowing that all people like to feel connected to one another as we did at UNIS."
Tara Hutchison University Centre in Svalbard, spring 2008. Read the full story here.