Polaris Project Research Symposium

Students in the Polaris Project are asked to do the impossible: travel more than half way around the world to the Siberian Arctic, design and implement a research project, and less than one month later present the results in a research symposium.

The 5th annual Polaris Project Research Symposium was held at the Northeast Science Station on Sunday, July 22, 2012.  After a brief introduction by Max Holmes, Nikita Zimov, and Sergey Zimov, all students presented their research – 12 undergraduate students, 2 Masters students, and 2 PhD students.  As the program indicates, a wide array of topics were presented, reflecting the goal of the Polaris Project to understand the “Arctic System”, not just an isolated component of the environment.

The Polaris Project Research Symposium, attended by more than 40 people, was a tremendous success.  Though in many cases data were still being collected the day before the presentations  (or even the day of the presentations…), the talks were remarkably polished and highlighted many exciting discoveries.  Many of the projects will be further developed and presented at major international research conferences, but I’m afraid that none of the conferences will compare to what we’ve just done – had a research conference about the Arctic, in the Arctic, at the conclusion of a month-long research expedition.  Congratulations to all the presenters for their fantastic efforts.  They truly have worked tirelessly for the past month.  Now, some sleep…

PS:  At the beginning of the 4-hour symposium the weather was warm and sunny.  At the end, it was snowing!