Memorial University of Newfoundland has recently joined the University of the Arctic consortium. Associate Vice-President (Academic) Dr. Michael Collins attended the Council of the University of the Arctic in Bodo, Norway in June to give a presentation on Memorial and its connection to the north. The University of the Arctic (UArctic) is a co-operative network of universities, colleges and other organizations committed to higher education and research in the north.
UArctic members share resources, facilities, and expertise to build post-secondary education programs that are relevant and accessible to northern students. The overall goal is to create a strong, sustainable circumpolar region by empowering northerners and northern communities through education and shared knowledge.
“Memorial’s connection to the north is quite strong, through Labrador and particularly the Labrador Institute and we hope by being a member to contribute to the educational offerings (by distance) of UArctic, particularly their Bachelor’s Degree of Circumpolar Studies, which a number of our Labrador students may be interested in taking,” said Dr. Collins.
The bachelor of circumpolar studies degree is designed to prepare northerners for advanced study or professional employment in fields as diverse as sustainable resource management, self-government, northern engineering and northern tourism. Special emphasis is given to matters concerning indigenous people of the circumpolar north.
As a member of UArctic, Memorial will promote student exchanges between northern universities through the north2north program and faculty exchanges through the Northtrex program and will contribute to undertake research on the north.
“Our researchers already undertake a number of programs in places like Labrador and Nunavut, which contribute to northern research,” said Dr. Collins. “Memorial is well suited to the UArctic Field School program which incorporates a selection of short, thematically focused courses that provide training for young researchers at member institutions in relevant fields and delivered in authentic northern locations.”
For more information on the University of the Arctic, visit: http://www.uarctic.org/.