2011 Participants

Photo of Geoff GreenGeoff Green
Expedition Leader
Founder & Executive Director, Students on Ice

Canadian adventurer, environmentalist and educator Geoff Green has been leading expeditions and adventures from pole to pole for the past fifteen years. Many notable organizations such as the Discovery Channel, World Wildlife Fund, National Audubon Society and the Smithsonian Institution enlist Geoff to lead their groups into the worlds most remote and exciting regions.

Most recently, Geoff was recognized as one of 25 Transformational Canadians. In 2005, he received a Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition from the U.S. Congress for his work with youth and the environment. He was also voted one of Canadas Top 40 under 40 an annual national prize event saluting Canadas top young leaders. In 2004, Outpost Magazine chose Geoff as one of the Top 5 Canadian Explorers to watch. In 2007, Geoff and the Students on Ice program received the prestigious Explorers Club Citation of Merit.

Geoff is the founder and Executive Director of Students on Ice Expeditions, an award-winning educational organization based in Gatineau, Qubec, Canada. The program now in its tenth year has taken over 1,500 students, teachers and scientists from around the world on expeditions to both the Arctic and the Antarctic. The goal of this unique project is to give the worlds youth a heightened understanding and respect for the planets global ecosystem, and the inspiration to protect it.

As expedition leader, Geoff is a veteran of 76 Antarctic expeditions and 33 Arctic expeditions. 

Photo of Peter AdamsPeter Adams, PhD
Professor Emeritus, Department of Geography
Trent University

Peter has degrees in Geography / Glaciology from McGill where he was a Carnegie Arctic Scholar, member of the McGill Axel Heiberg Expeditions and Director of the McGill Sub Arctic Research Laboratory. He was founding chair of Geography at Trent where he continued to conduct research on ice (notably lake and glacier ice) across the North. He has had a lifelong interest in education, research practice and governance in polar regions. As M.P. (Peterborough), 1993 to 2006, he was Chair of the Government Caucus on Post Secondary Education and Research (member of its Arctic Caucus) and Canada's representative to the Parliamentarians of the Arctic. He played a significant role in Canada's signing of the Madrid Protocol to the Antarctic Treaty. He is a Member of the Privy Council of Canada. Samples of Peter's polar-related publications ( some co-authored) are: Research, information systems and the North; Canada and polar science; The University of the Arctic and Canada; Canada, the Antarctic and the Madrid Protocol; Trent, McGill and the North a story of Canada's growth a sovereign polar nation; The roles of snow, lake ice and lake water in the distribution of major ions in the cover of a lake; A small glacier as an index of regional mass balance: Baby Glacier, Axel Heiberg Island; Mass balance of small glaciers other than ice sheets and Remote sensing resources for monitoring glacier fluctuations. 

Photo of Jenny Baeseman

Jenny Baeseman, PhD
Director, Association of Polar Early Career Scientists

Jenny Baeseman been interested in life in streams starting with her childhood on a dairy farm in Wisconsin. Her training includes a BS in Water Chemistry from the University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point, MS in Civil Engineering from the University of Minnesota, a PhD also in Civil Engineering with an environmental emphasis from the University of Colorado, and postdoctoral training in geosciences at Princeton University. During her training, she has spent 3 summer seasons in the McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica and has a deep appreciation and interest in the Polar Regions.

Jenny began working with the International Polar Year (IPY) in the summer of 2005. While working as an Assistant Professor in Biological Science, she became the co-chair of the IPY Tertiary Education Committee and the founding Director for the Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS), one of the major legacy programs of the IPY. One of her main objectives for the organization is to help young researchers combine their interests in interdisciplinary polar science with interests in education and outreach and professional development activities. She began serving as the Director of APECS in 2007, when the Directorate was hosted at the International Arctic Research Center (IARC) at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, where she currently an affilate assistant research professor. The University of Tromsø, and the Norwegian Research Council are now hosting the APECS Directorate Office, and Jenny is happy to be living in Tromsø, the “Paris of the North”.

One of Jenny's personal goals is to make sure everyone she meets knows that polar bears don't eat penguins - as they live in different polar regions.

Photo of John BoothJohn G. Booth
Partner, Conservation Finance International

John Booth is a Partner with Conservation Finance International. CFI is a UK based private equity group focusing on environmental assets and conservation. CFI provides equity, financial structuring and management for commercial environmental development projects such as clean energy, sustainable forestry and carbon credits and is the leading contributor to the Save the South China Tiger charities.

A lawyer and former investment banker, John is also Chairman of Laramide Resources (LAM.T), and a Director of H2O Innovation (HEO.V), Maya Gold and Silver (MYA.V), and Tirex Resources (TXX.V).  He is the co-founder of Midpoint, an online foreign exchange payments company and serves on the board of the Ottawa Riverkeeper charity with SOI Founder and Executive Director Geoff Green. An avid paddler, skier and wilderness tripper, he has a passion for environmental issues and where possible exploring capital markets solutions for environmental issues. He was involved in the early SOX, NOX and carbon markets, debt-to-nature swaps, Children’s Tropical Rainforest project, WILD 8 & 9 and other initiatives around the nascent Payment for Ecosystem Services market(s). John is also a past speaker at various investor conferences focused around both natural resources and ecommerce.

John completed his BSc (Hons) in freshwater biology and environmental studies at the University of Guelph, LLB and JD in the joint law program at the Universities of Windsor and Detroit and his LLM in international finance, tax and environmental law at Kings College, University of London. He is admitted to the Bar in Ontario, New York and DC and has worked in international financial services for over 20 years for various firms including Merrill Lynch International, ICAP, ABN AMRO Bank, World Bank, CIBC and Climate Change Capital. 

Photo of Olle CarlssonOlle Carlsson
Polar Naturalist

Olle Carlsson was born in Sweden and is currently living there. Formerly a teacher, he left the profession in order to write, photograph, play jazz and travel. He has travelled extensively in the Atlantic sector of the Arctic, including the Northwest Passage, Greenland and Svalbard.

Since 1991, he has spent the northern winter seasons in his favorite area, Antarctica, sharing the migration route of the Arctic Tern, always heading for summer, in the North as in the South. In Antarctica he has been an expedition leader, naturalist and lecturer for various organizations. Olle admits to being infected by the Polar bug, defined by the early explorers as if you have ventured into the ice once, you will always long to come back. Apart from the remote North and South, he has worked as a naturalist guide, lecturer and Zodiac driver along the coasts of Europe, around England and in the Baltic Sea. He has backpacked parts of Asia and participated in a tree planting project in Kenya.

Together with his friend Stefan Lundgren, Olle has published Antarctica - In the interest of all mankind (1990), currently only in Swedish and appointed the Panda Book of 1991 by the Swedish section of World Wildlife Fund. More recently, Olle and Stefan have completed Svalbard - The Land beyond the Northcape (in English). In 1998-99, they completed another book in English, Antarctica - A souvenir book from the 7th continent. He has written several articles for magazines and newspapers, and also lectured and given slide-show presentations on the Polar areas around Sweden, Denmark and in the US.

Photo of Ian Church

Ian Church
Environmental Scientist

Semi retired and working part time as an environmental and science consultant in the Yukon, Ian pursued a university education in ecology and geography that complemented his interest in the natural world and would lead to a career that would allow him to make a contribution to the conservation of wild places. 

For 28 years Ian worked in his “dream career” with Parks Canada.  Over that period he had the privilege of working across the Canada in positions responsible for science, education and interpretation, planning, resource management and environmental impact assessment of protected places.  He left Parks in 1998 after serving as a Park Superintendent in he Rockies.

After leaving Parks, Ian worked for the Canadian Government’s Northern Program as Director of Environment in the Yukon and subsequently for the Yukon Government when the federal responsibilities were devolved to the territory.  He led a team of professionals conducting environmental assessments of large development projects and advancing federal and territorial effort on responding to climate and environmental change.

During the last few years of his 40 year government career, Ian served as Senior Science Advisor to the Yukon Government.  One of his responsibilities was Chair, Canadian National Committee, International Polar Year.  This closed the loop for his career.  It was the adventure and the excitement generated by emerging knowledge generated by the IGY, the 3rd IPY, that motivated Ian, then in Grade 5, to focus on earth sciences. Ian is proud that an outcome of this IPY is the large number of gifted and dedicated young people that are motivated to pursue inter disciplinary studies that incorporate polar and earth systems science. He is excited to get to know and learn from a cohort of these individuals during the upcoming expedition. 

Photo of Luke CoplandLuke Copland, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
University of Ottawa

Luke Copland's research focuses on improving our understanding of glacier dynamics and recent changes of ice masses, and their links to climate variability. He uses both satellite image analysis and fieldwork to make these measurements, and in recent years he has undertaken fieldwork in the Canadian High Arctic, Karakoram Himalaya, Antarctic, and European Alps. He also leads an annual University of Ottawa, Department of Geography glaciological field trip to the Mt. St. Elias Icefield in Kluane National Park, Yukon.

Luke Copland was recently awarded a Canadian Foundation for Innovation award to develop a new Laboratory for Cryospheric Research in the University of Ottawa's Department of Geography. This lab will house a suite of new computers, GIS and satellite image analysis software, together with a range of field equipment such as differential GPS units and ground-penetrating radar systems.

Photo of John CrumpJohn Crump
Polar Issues Coordinator, UNEP/GRID-Arendal

John Crump works for GRID-Arendal, a Norwegian foundation that supports the work of the United Nations Environment Programme. He focuses on climate change in the Arctic and Small Island Developing States and works in a number of international settings, including the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Other projects involve Indigenous Peoples and the co-management of resources, new environmental governance structures, and other related issues. 

John's academic background is in journalism, communications, history and political economy. He has a Bachelor of Journalism and a Master's Degree in Canadian Studies from Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. His love of northern regions began when he set up a tent one summer on the bank of the Yukon River. After finishing his undergraduate programme, he traveled and then wound up back in the Yukon where he worked as a journalist and met his wife, Leslie Cole. Two of his three daughters were born in the Yukon.

He has worked for CBC Radio, been Cabinet Communications Advisor in the Yukon Premier’s office, done policy and research for the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples, and been Government Relations Manager for the Nunavut Planning Commission. He was also Executive Director of the Canadian Arctic Resources Committee (CARC) and Executive Secretary of the Arctic Council Indigenous Peoples' Secretariat in Copenhagen, Denmark.

John has taught graduate and undergraduate courses in journalism, public administration and geography at Yukon College in Whitehorse, Carleton University and the University of Trier in the beautiful Mosel Valley in Germany.

Photo of Rob DorcasRob Dorcas
Director, Woodside Agency & Guide 

Rob works has worked in the Outdoor Industry for the past 18 years as a senior executive within public corporations and as an independent consultant. He has a wide range of knowledge about the business of outdoor products. His clients include some of the larger outdoor companies in North America, as well as specialty retail independents and larger chains such as MEC, LL Bean, Cabelas, Canadian Tire, Bass Pro, REI and EMS. If you have an idea about products, manufacturing or new science within an outdoor industry oriented business, Rob is a great resource.

Outside of the boardroom Rob’s passion has always been the Polar Regions. Rob’s been guiding in the High Arctic for over 15 years and has lead many expeditions to locations such as Ellesmere Island, Baffin Island, Devon Island, as well as several new routes in Eastern Greenland, Iceland and Labrador.

Rob now runs Woodside Agency: a sales, marketing and consulting business based in Chelsea, Quebec. This is Rob’s first trip to Antarctica and he is thrilled to be sharing the experience with the SOI team. 

Photo of Rob EagleRob Eagle, PhD
Postdoctoral Scholar, California Institute of Technology
Research Associate, University of California, Los Angeles

Rob was originally trained as a biologist, gaining his PhD at the University of Cambridge in 2004. Since then he has diversified into a number of different areas including using geochemical approaches to trace the response of marine organisms to climate change and ocean acidification, to reconstruct past climate, and to study the evolution of physiology including trying to measure the body temperature of a dinosaur! He is currently a Postdoctoral Scholar at the California Institute of Technology and a Research Associate at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Photo of Martin Fortier

Martin Fortier, PhD
Executive Director, ArcticNet
Université Laval

A specialist of zooplankton and carbon fluxes in ice-covered seas, Martin completed his PhD in Biological Oceanography at Université Laval in 1999. His training as part of large international research programs in Japan, the Canadian Arctic and Greenland set the stage for his future career as an untiring coordinator, promoter and facilitator of international Arctic research and collaboration. From 1999 to 2003, he was the scientific coordinator of the International North Water Polynya Study (NOW) and of the Canadian Arctic Shelf Exchange Study (CASES) International Arctic Research Networks, involving more than 120 leading experts in Arctic science from Canada and 9 foreign countries. In 2002, he was heavily involved in the implementation of the refit and modification of the CCGS Amundsen into a state-oftheart research icebreaker. He has since served as chief scientist on seven expeditions onboard the Amundsen, including its inaugural voyage in 2003.

Martin was appointed as Executive Director of the ArcticNet Network of Centres of Excellence (NCE) in the fall of 2003. As the worlds largest national Arctic research network, ArcticNet brings together scientists and managers in the natural, human health and social sciences with their partners in Inuit organizations, northern communities, government and industry to help Canadians face the impacts and opportunities of climate change and globalization in the Arctic. Over 140 ArcticNet researchers and 500 graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, research associates and technicians from 30 Canadian universities and 8 Federal departments collaborate on 36 research projects with more than 100 partner organizations from Canada and 12 foreign countries.

His role as a spokesperson for ArcticNet and Arctic research has taken him to international conferences around the world and into many Inuit communities across the Canadian Arctic. He currently serves on numerous national and international Arctic research boards and committees, including the Advisory Board of the Canadian Polar Continental Shelf Program, which he chairs. In November 2010, he was appointed as a member of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Polar Commission.

An avid amateur photographer, his pictures of Arctic research and scenery have been featured in several national and international magazines, brochures and newspapers.

Born in Montreal, Martin now lives in Quebec City with his wife and four children.

Photo of Bernard Funston

Bernard Funston
Chair & Chief Executive Officer, Canadian Polar Commission

Bernard  Funston was born in Fort Smith, Northwest Territories.  He is a constitutional lawyer and a member in good standing of the Law Societies of Northwest Territories and Alberta. He holds degrees from Trent University, the University of Cambridge (King’s College), and the University of Alberta.

Bernard has extensive experience on a range of matters pertaining to the Canadian North and the northern circumpolar region, including systems of governance, international and intergovernmental relations, Aboriginal land claims and self-government processes, resource development issues, scientific research and cooperation, and a range of fields relating to economic and community development. He is currently the Chair and CEO of the Canadian Polar Commission.  He is also the Chief Federal Negotiator for two aboriginal land claim and self-government processes in the Northwest Territories.

In his international work, Mr. Funston was directly involved in the negotiations leading to the creation of the Arctic Council by the 8 Arctic states in 1996 and has participated in the work of the Council since its inception.  The Arctic Council is a high level intergovernmental forum carrying out a broad range of international projects and assessments in the field of sustainable development and environmental protection in the Arctic.  Mr. Funston chaired the Arctic Council’s international committee which drafted the Arctic Council Rules of Procedure.

From 1997 to 2006 he was an advisor to Canada’s Ambassador for Circumpolar Affairs and to the Canadian Arctic Council delegation. From 2002 to 2011 he was the Executive Secretary to the Arctic Council’s Sustainable Development Working Group Secretariat and in this capacity coordinated the activities of the working group during the chairmanships of Iceland (2002-2004), Russia (2004-2006), Norway (2006-2009) and Denmark (2009–2011).

During his graduate work at the Scott Polar Research Institute in Cambridge, England he studied a range of matters relating to Antarctica.

Bernard is a guitar maker and builds custom electric, acoustic, classical and flamenco guitars: funstonguitars.com.

Photo of Eric Galbraith

Eric Galbraith, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences
McGill University

A native of Halifax, Nova Scotia, Eric worked as a geologist in South America and the Canadian Arctic before becoming an oceanographer. His research looks at how global ocean circulation interacts with the rest of the climate system, what this means for marine life, and how the ocean will respond to future climate change. He is particularly interested in how the Southern Ocean controls atmospheric carbon dioxide, and what its role was during natural climate changes that occurred during the recent ice ages.

Photo of Hans Gelter

Hans Gelter, PhD
Assistant Professor, Senior Lecturer & Education Manager
Division of Media & Experience Production
Luleå University of Technology

Hans Gelter, PhD in Biology, holds a faculty position as Senior lecturer in Biology and education program coordinator for the Master's Program in Professional Experience Production at the Department of Music, Media and Experience Production, Luleå University of Technology, Sweden.

Hans teaches various subjects within the Experience Production Study Program, such as Hospitality, Interpretation, Guiding, Environmental and Outdoor Education, Experience Production, Creativity Management etc. He has previously been teaching Biology, Environmental and Outdoor Education at the Department of Teacher Education at Lule University of Technology, and Genetics, Evolution and Ecology at Uppsala University.

Hans has experience as Nature Interpreter and Guide working with the Swedish company TEMA Resor on safaris in Tanzania, nature trekking in Greece, Madeira, the Austrian Mountains and in Nepal. Hans also runs a nature tourism company - Guide Natura - and is presently engaged in a validation/certification system for nature guides in Sweden.

Hans has participated in scientific expeditions on Greenland and along the Northern Russian Arctic coast as well as private nature tours in Northern Canada, the USA, across Europe, in Central Russia, Australia and New Zealand. He is a keen Mountaineer, having climbed on expeditions in the Alps, the Alai and the Himalayas. Hans is a member of the uArctic Network for Northern Tourism Researchers and the International Network on Polar Tourism Research.

Photo of Sonja Heinrich

Sonja Heinrich, PhD
Teaching Fellow, School of Biology
Gatty Marine Laboratory, University of St Andrews

Sonja teaches marine biology at the University of St Andrews in Scotland (UK) where she also runs the Master in Marine Mammal Science programme. She is based at the renown Sea Mammal Research Unit which reflects her research interests in the furry and blubbery ocean predators. Sonja gained her PhD from St Andrews in 2006 for her work on sympatric ecology and conservation of coastal dolphins in southern Chile, holds a Masters in Marine Science degree from the University of Otago in New Zealand, and a general biology degree from the University of Cologne in Germany. Her research activities and work as guide/lecturer aboard expedition-style cruiseships have taken her all around the globe, with a notable preference for remote cool-temperate and polar regions. A keen explorer of ocean and mountain realms alike, Sonja tends to mimic the migration of the Arctic tern, with northern summers spent in Scotland and the Arctic, and northern winters at least partially in the southern hemisphere (teaching timetable permitting). Sonja has been visiting the Antarctic and subantarctic islands annually since 1998, and loves to share her passion for polar regions with students and general public alike. What better classroom setting could there be than amongst the ice and wildlife of Antarctica?

Photo of Santiago ImbertiSantiago Imberti

An ornithologist, photographer and writer, Santiago was born and raised in southern Patagonia, Argentina. He obtained a degree in tourism and later in ornithology, which allowed him to combine his love for nature and the outdoors with his work as a bird watcher, naturalist, fly fisherman and mountain guide. During the Antarctic off-season Santiago does ornithology research on birds of southern Patagonia and the Antarctic. Among others, he is studying the biology of the rediscovered Austral Rail, the Magellanic or ‘Magic’ Plover and also coordinates a project to save the Endangered Patagonian endemic Hooded Grebe. He does volunteer work for the NGO ‘Ambiente Sur’ that seeks to protect the environment and educate younger generations about a sustainable living in southern Patagonia.

His articles and stories have been published in scientific journals and popular travel magazines. In recent years, two of his books on birds have been published, he has become a certified wilderness first aid responder and, since his singing abilities are rather poor, he has produced a CD of bird sounds of Patagonia and Antarctica.

Whenever he is off work, guess what? ...He goes birdwatching and sound recording, his main passions, mainly in his backyard (the rather large Los Glaciares National Park, where he lives).

Photo of Silje-Kristin Jensen

Silje-Kristin Jensen
Council Chair, Association of Polar Early Career Scientists

A lifelong fascination of the ocean encouraged Silje to study marine biology. Her interest in wildlife and environmental protection has grown over the years. Silje first got involved in polar research in 2006 when she participated in an expedition to western Greenland and fell in love with the white silence. Since that time, she studied marine mammal health as a master project where she examined disease in polar bears, seals and whales.

Now Silje has a Master of Science degree from the University of Tromsø and the University centre in Svalbard (UNIS), and is working as an Arctic biologist.  Her research has focused mainly on the Arctic ecosystem. She is looking forward to learning more about the Antarctic ecosystem. Silje is Council Chair for the Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS).

Photo of Jeffrey Kavanaugh

Jeffrey Kavanaugh, PhD 
Assistant Professor, Department of Earth & Atmospheric Sciences
University of Alberta

Jeffrey Kavanaugh is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Alberta. In his research into the flow and dynamics of glaciers he employs a variety of field techniques, including borehole studies of basal hydrological and mechanical conditions, GPS measurements of surface flow rates, and ice-penetrating radar surveys of ice thickness. Jeffrey then uses data collected in the field to constrain computer models he develops to investigate the flow of these fascinating “rivers of ice“.

His research has taken him to the McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica, Arctic Canadas Devon Island, the Canadian Rockies, and Yukons St. Elias Mountains. 

Photo of Bruce KlockBruce Klock 
Electronic Media Specialist, Parks Canada

Bruce Klock's Antarctic career kicks off February 16, 2011!   Hailing from the Ottawa Valley (Deep River) Bruce holds an Honours Bachelor of Outdoor Recreation and BA (History) both from Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ontario.

Bruce has been guiding professionally since 1982, when he started guiding with Wilderness Tours in Beachburg, Ontario.  He has rafted, canoed and kayaked all over North America from Smithers BC, to Gaspé, Quebec, to South Carolina, to California. Bruce has been involved in many expedition rafting trips on the Snake and Salmon rivers in Idaho, the Chilko, and Fraser and Babine and Skeena in BC, as well as 3 separate trips on the Colorado river in the Grand Canyon in 2003, 2006, and in 2010.  Bruce has never been North of 60, but that is slated for the summer of 2012 on the Firth River. Which may change as opportunities arise!

Bruce is currently employed as the Electronic Media Specialist with Parks Canada Agency, Banff National Park. His specialty is Internet Content design and production as well as Intranet development, support, and content management. 

Bruce is also an avid amateur photographer. Feel free to check out his photos here: bruceklock.smugmug.com.

Photo of Ken KontioKen Kontio, MD, FRCS (C) 
Expedition Doctor

Ken completed his undergraduate training at the University of Waterloo and his medical/surgical training at McMaster University. He has worked at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (Ottawa) as a staff surgeon in orthopaedic surgery. He is a specialist in sports injuries and limb reconstruction. He is an assistant professor at the University of Ottawa, involved in teaching undergraduate and postgraduate medical/surgical trainees. His research interests include medical education as well as simulation and innovation in surgical training.

When not working, Ken’s interests include construction projects, hockey, scuba diving, woodworking, and ballroom dancing. He and his wife Ginette (Lalonde-Kontio) have travelled extensively for work and pleasure.

Photo of Ginette Lalonde-Kontio

Ginette Lalonde-Kontio, MD, CCFP
Expedition Doctor

Ginette was a teacher prior to entering medical training at McMaster University. She completed specialty training in Family Medicine and Anaesthesia at the University of Ottawa and the University of Western Ontario. She has also completed a Master of Education and is currently pursuing a Master of Aviation Medicine degree at the University of Otago (New Zealand).

Ginette has been involved with the Canadian Armed Forces (Captain-Reserve) and participated in the humanitarian mission in Haiti, in the aftermath of the earthquake in the winter of 2010. She has also participated in various multinational training programmes in Canada and the United States.

Professionally, Ginette works as a Family Physician, specializing in Anaesthesia, with an interest in Occupational Medicine and Travel Medicine. She is also the Medical Director for the Canadian Group for Emergency Training (CGET) and is involved in medical education at the University of Ottawa.

Outside of medicine Ginette is an avid marathon runner and enjoys yoga, weight training, learning languages, scuba diving and ballroom dancing. She and her husband Ken (Kontio) have travelled extensively for work and pleasure.

Photo of Calista Morrison

Calista Morrison
Mentor, Association of Polar Early Career Scientists

Calista Morrison was born and raised in Whitehorse, Yukon. She recently graduated from Acadia University in 2009 with a BSc in Biology and a minor in Classics. In her final year, Calista completed an honours thesis where she studied the effects of spruce bark beetle infestation levels on grizzly bear forage. Her study was conducted in the area surrounding Haines Junction, Yukon, where she returned the following summer to do contract work for the Yukon Government. The year following her graduation Calista participated in the Circumpolar Young Leaders Program which placed her in Tromso, Norway becoming a member of the CliC International Project Office team. Since then, Calista has travelled through South East Asia, and returned to her hometown to work for the year while applying and preparing for a Masters program in fall 2011.

Photo of Lee Narraway

Lee Narraway
Adventure Photographer

Lee Narraway spent her childhood exploring the wetlands, forests and lakes of Eastern Canada with her father, an outstanding naturalist and environmentalist. This ignited a passion and curiosity for the outdoors that continues to this day.

Lee received her first camera at ten years of age and soon discovered the joy of sharing her view of the world with others. She uses natural light and her ability to communicate with people to create unique environmental portraits. Her professional career is now focused on travel and adventure photography.

In her quest for outstanding images, Lee has skied, hiked, canoed, backpacked, and traveled by dog team, horseback, snow machine, helicopter, hot air balloon and icebreaker to remote and isolated parts of the world.

When she visited Canada's High Arctic, Lee became fascinated with its diversity and haunting beauty. Now, she strives to capture its mystery and magic on film by documenting the dramatic scenery, the wildlife and the evolving lifestyle and culture of the Inuit.

Based in White Lake, Ontario, this professional adventure photographer continues to travel the world, discovering wildlife, landscapes and characters through the lens of her camera. Her popular photography workshops have been taught in such diverse areas as Australia, Chile, Antarctica and the Arctic.

Photo of Pascale Otis

Pascale Otis

Pascale Otis first started working in the polar regions in 2000 when she was a student at Laval University studying cold adaptations in Greater Snow Geese (thats when she was nicknamed Mother Goose!). After graduating with a Masters in Biology, she continued her research on polar species at McMurdo station in Antarctica before coming back to Canada to study the physiological response of humans exposed to extreme environments. Pascale has always loved traveling and discovering new places. Her passion for adventure led her to spend 15 months on a sailboat that wintered on the Antarctic Peninsula (Antarctic Mission Sedna IV). Upon returning from the Ice, she then crossed the South Pacific Ocean on a smaller sailboat where she filmed and documented the impacts of environmental changes on many tropical islands. Her goal as a biologist is to share knowledge by making science accessible to the general public.

Photo of Grant Redvers

Grant Redvers
Environmental Scientist & Sailor

Prior to taking to a life at sea in the high latitudes, Grant Redvers worked as a scientist in New Zealand and at Scott Base in Antarctica. He has a masters degree in environmental science, and is a qualified yacht skipper and dive master.

In the early 2000s he sailed from New Zealand to Antarctica and South Georgia Island on a 45ft yacht for mixed climbing and glaciology research expeditions. After sailing back to NZ through the Pacific Islands he then joined Tara Expeditions. Aboard Tara he completed a number of expeditions to Antarctica, South Georgia and Patagonia, supporting a diverse range of research, natural history and adventure projects, before setting a course for the Arctic.

The last project on Tara took Grant to the Arctic Ocean for almost 2 years, from 2006 2008, as the leader of an expedition to study climate change as part of the International Polar Year. He then sailed to the west coast of Greenland to support glaciology research projects, and has just published a book about the Tara Arctic mission.

Photo of Natalia Rybczynski

Natalia Rybczynski, PhD
Paleobiologist, Canadian Museum of Nature

Natalia Rybczynski is a paleobiologist at the Canadian Museum of Nature whose research interests include the evolution and biogeography of polar vertebrates. Her current field research program focuses on fossil deposits in the High Arctic. Paleoenvironmental reconstructions based on these deposits provide valuable evidence for climate change research and also a context for investigating vertebrate evolution. She and her students study fossil vertebrates using an interdisciplinary approach (e.g., stable isotopes, comparative anatomy and biomechanics) to better understand the evolutionary relationship between form, function and environmental change.

Natalia did her undergraduate studies at Carleton University and a M.Sc. at the University of Toronto. Her Ph.D. was completed at Duke University in 2003, and since then she has led multiple expeditions to the Canadian High Arctic, including the expedition in 2007 which led to the discovery of the proto-pinniped Puijila an ancient relative of the lineage that today includes the seal, sea lions and walrus.

Photo of Claudia Schroder-Adams

Claudia Schröder-Adams, PhD
Professor, Department of Earth Sciences
Carleton University

A Professor of Earth Sciences at Carleton University, Claudia Schröder-Adams teaches geology and paleontology courses including Dinosaurs, Earths Paleogeography, Basin Analysis and Field Geology. The Dinosaur course is one of the most popular courses at Carleton and led to the creation of the Vertebrate Paleontology Program in collaboration with the Canadian Museum of Nature. Her research focuses on basin analysis, stratigraphy, paleoceanography, micropaleontology, anoxic basins, estuaries and incised valleys and takes her to western Canada, Canadas west coast, the Arctic and eastern Australia. She has participated in DSDP and ODP expeditions including Leg 119 to Prydz Bay, Antarctica.

As part of the Canadian GEM (Geo-mapping for Energy and Minerals) program, Claudia is presently conducting a multi-year geological investigation assessing a number of sedimentary basins in both the Eastern and Western Arctic regions to produce a pan-Arctic biostratigraphic framework. Claudia has just completed a three year term on the National Science and Engineering Research Council Discovery Grant Selection Committee. She served as Chair of Carletons Earth Sciences Department from 2003 to 2006 and is active in several science outreach programs.

Claudia will provide a deep-time perspective of the Antarctic continent and its geological and associated ecological history. Students will review the evidence that has allowed us to infer the history of Antarctica from ancient times, with a focus on the evolution of terrestrial and marine ecosystems of the Mesozoic and Cenozoic. Claudia has a passion for field-based teaching and her research and field work is an ideal combination for the SOI program.

Photo of Monica ShimamuraMonica Shimamura
United States Environmental Protection Agency

Monica Shimamura works for the Government of the United States' Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, DC. She holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Massachusets Amherst and a graduate degree from Johns Hopkins University. This will be Monica's first expedition to Antarctica. 

Photo of Tim Straka

Tim Straka
Education Program Director, Students on Ice

Tim Straka co-creates transformative learning experiences with students of all ages. Committed to environmental and civic education, he has taught at elementary, secondary and post-secondary levels across North America, in Central Europe, in the Arctic and Antarctica. He is a part-time Instructor in the College of Science and Management at the University of Northern British Columbia.

Tim’s interests range widely from philosophy, to ecopsychology, to bioregionalism, and youth empowerment. He has worked with Outward Bound Canada, the YMCA of Greater Vancouver, the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board, the Kawartha Outdoor Education Centre, Ontario's Ministry of Education and several Canadian Parliamentarians. Tim is a member of the Canadian Network for Environmental Education and Communication, the Ontario College of Teachers and the Council of Outdoor Educators of Ontario.

Tim lives an active lifestyle. He enjoys skiing, paddling, swimming, biking, hucking frisbees and back-country travel. Tim is currently completing the construction of his home which will meet LEED Canada for Homes platinum certification level. It recently became Canada's first certified residential Passive House.

Tim earned a Master of Science degree in Environmental Studies from Lesley University, and undergraduate degrees in Outdoor and Experiential Education (Queen’s University) and Politics (Bishop’s University). He has worked full-time with Students on Ice since 2007.

Photo of Alex Taylor

Alex Taylor
Polar Educator

Alex Taylor‘s Antarctic career kicked off in 1992 when he was hired by the British Antarctic Survey as a polar guide for a glaciology project in the shadow of Mt. Vinson. This led to dozens of other expeditions and soon to leading expeditions in the High Canadian Arctic. A love of the polar regions incredible landscapes, wildlife, history and other-worldly experiences keeps him coming back to these remote locations year after year.

More than 10 seasons south in Antarctica have afforded Alex the privilege of visiting many parts of the continent working in support of science projects for the British Antarctic Survey and the United States Antarctic Program. He has also provided technical and safety support for television and films down south. Most notable were the two ship-based expeditions to film the award-winning feature “Shackleton‘s Antarctic Adventure”.

Alex has a degree in Kinesiology from the University of Calgary, specializing in Outdoor Pursuits and Geography. He has climbed and traveled all over the world but the Canadian Rockies and the Canadian Arctic remain his favourite places on the planet.

Alex‘s home base is in Canmore, Alberta. He has been working in the Rocky Mountain National Parks for over 23 years. His eclectic work life has always been focused on the wild outdoors and has included jobs as a wildland fire fighter, wildlife technician, weather station specialist, still photographer and videographer, to name a few. When not in Antarctica, Alex works as a back country project manager for Parks Canada in Lake Louise.

Photo of Aradhna TripatiAradhna Tripati, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Earth & Space Sciences
& Department of Atmospheric & Oceanic Sciences
Institute of Geophysics & Planetary Physics
University of California, Los Angeles

Aradhna is a paleoclimatologist, graduating with PhD from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 2002. For the next seven years she was a Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge, UK, where she studied past warm periods in Earth’s history including the history of ice sheets in both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres and the history of atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. She has recently moved to the University of California, Los Angeles, to take up a faculty position. She has previously lead a research expedition to the Arctic, but is very excited about heading to the other pole!

Photo of Niki Trudeau

Niki Trudeau
Outreach & Participant Coordinator, Students on Ice

Niki Trudeau holds a Bachelor of Science in Human Kinetics and is a graduate of the University of Ottawa’s Bachelor of Education program. Her love for the outdoors began on paddling trips with her family in Algonquin Park. It is this passion for environmental awareness and outdoor adventures that brought Niki to Students on Ice in 2008.

As the SOI Participant Coordinator, Niki’s ability to smoothly coordinate trip logistics and be the primary participant liaison is instrumental in making SOI expeditions successful. She manages the day-to-day operations of our field programs and provides support for expedition staff, educators, chaperones and student participants. As part of her work, Niki travels on Arctic and Antarctic expeditions. This immersion helps her understand the student and staff experience and provide support to all those hoping to participate in SOI expeditions. Niki also manages SOI Outreach, delivering presentations in a variety of contexts and working with our alumni to both coordinate outreach events and support them in their own presentations and endeavours.

Niki is a member of the Ontario College of Teachers and the Council of Outdoor Educators of Ontario. She volunteers as a tutor at Nunavut Sivuniksavut, a college program based in Ottawa for Inuit youth preparing for educational, training, and career opportunities.


A select group of students were chosen to participate on the Students on Ice Antarctic University Expedition 2011. Applications for these positions were received from students around the world and offers were made on a competitive basis. These 60 individuals from 23 Universities are learned from Antarctica, Education Team members and each other! Students participating in the Students on Ice Antarctic University Expedition 2013 will be announced in 2012.

Photo of Katrina AdamsKatrina Adams
McGill University

For her whole life, Katrina Adams has been fascinated with nature and has thus dedicated her life to studying and being in it. Currently studying biology at McGill University, she is focusing her studies on marine and freshwater biology, and hopes to become a marine biologist in the future. She has previously been to the Arctic with Students on Ice in 2007, and her life had been changed by this experience, as she saw firsthand the effects of climate change. Since then she has done work at a whale research station in the Gulf of the Saint-Lawrence, where she studied the behavior of Humpback, Fin and Minke whales. She also participated in an exchange program to Australia, where she studied coral reef ecosystems at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, with field trips to the Great Barrier Reef, Fraser Island as well as to the tropical rainforests.

In Antarctica, she hopes to gain insight on the changing ecosystem in Antarctica and to share with her community her experiences and new knowledge which will hopefully cause a new appreciation for the fragile environment. With this dedication to nature, this opportunity to go to Antarctica, the ultimate for natural ecosystems, is a chance of a lifetime for her!

Photo of Fiona Ashman

Fiona Ashman
Imperial College London

Fiona is studying geophysics at Imperial College London in the UK. In her spare time she enjoys skiing, sailing and other high adrenaline sports such as canyon swinging, zorbing and para-penting. She is an active member of her student union, The Royal School of Mines, and edits the student newsletter. She also enjoys watching films and going to the theatre.

In Antarctica, Fiona is looking forward to learning more about the geological and geophysical processes that occur on and around the Antarctic, and is especially interested in physical oceanography and structural geology. Fiona hopes to work in exploration geophysics after she graduates.

Fiona first become enamoured with Antarctica when she saw ‘Life in the Freezer’ as a child. Since then, she has learnt a lot more about the environmental and scientific relevance of Antarctica and is very much looking forward to this expedition.

Photo of Nehal Al TonobeyNehal Al Tonobey
McGill University

Nehal Al Tonoby is a student from Egypt. She is a student at McGill University enrolled in the Antarctica and the Earth System course.



Photo of Maryam Aljoaan

Maryam Aljoaan
Jacobs University Bremen

Maryam Aljoaan is a student from Kuwait, and she is pursuing a major in Earth and Space Science at Jacobs University Bremen in Germany. Currently she is working on her thesis about the Temporal Evolution of deep and shallow hydrothermal systems on the slow-spreading Mid-Atlantic Ridge (MAR).

Her most recent oceanographic experience was her participation in the field trip to the Kosterfjord in Tjärnö, Sweden. She also participated in a North Sea excursion on board the R/V Heincke with a team of scientists from the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research (AWI). Her latest geological field experience includes her participation in the Ries impact crater workshop in Nördlingen, Germany with a group of scientists from NASA and the Bavarian Geological Survey. Other field experiences included different locations such as the Gastlosen Mountains in Switzerland, and the Harz Mountains and Helgoland Island in Germany.

After the Antarctic expedition, Maryam plans to speak at schools and universities around Kuwait to share her experience as well as to shed light on climate change and on local environmental problems.  She also plans to launch a campaign under the slogan “Protect earth, Go blue!” Maryam is a bilingual in English and Arabic, and is working to improve her German and Russian. Her interests are ocean and space exploration, planetary science, extreme environments, astrobiology and paleontology.

Photo of Zoe Baker

Zoe Baker
McGill University

Zoe is in her second year of study at McGill University, majoring in Environment – Ecological Determinants of Health, and minoring in Political Science. She is passionate about the environment and on the expedition she hopes to gain a greater understanding of the implications of human activities upon Antarctica’s ecosystem. Zoe is also excited to learn more about Antarctic wildlife and to research the Southern Ocean. In her free time she enjoys skiing in both the winter and the summer on Whistler Mountain, and spending time outdoors hiking or running. Zoe also enjoys participating in the McGill chapters of UNICEF and Amnesty International.  She loves traveling and is excited to visit the continent that has been most uninhibited by human developments.

Photo of Amy BakerAmy Baker
University of St Andrews

Amy Baker is a student from the United States. She is a student at the University of St Andrews enrolled in the Predator Ecology in Polar Ecosystems course.



Photo of Chris Barrett

Christopher Barrett
McGill University

Christopher Barrett is a second-year undergraduate student at McGill University majoring in Finance in the Desautels Faculty of Management. He was born in New York City and lived just outside the city until coming to Montreal. He is passionate about music, sports, and being active outdoors. In his free time, he enjoys soccer, skiing, running, rock climbing, playing bass guitar, and parkour. His favourite bands are Dispatch, John Butler Trio, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Third Eye Blind. During the two weeks on the expedition, he looks forward to taking oceanographic readings during the sail and studying the habitats of Antarctica.

Photo of Natasha Barrett

Natasha Barrett
University of Western Australia

Growing up in the South-West of Western Australia, one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots, Natasha easily acquired an appreciation for the environment and its protection. She attended school at St Brigid’s College and is currently studying Geochemistry at UWA, and hopes to do research relating to global climate change and environmental conservation. Natasha enjoys the outdoors and is actively involved in many sports, representing UWA tennis and golf. She also enjoys hiking, cycling, diving and a range of other outdoor activities.

Natasha was drawn to travel to Antarctica by both the excitement of travelling to the coldest place on Earth, and the desire to gain some of the best practical experience analysing past climates and atmospheric changes from Antarctic ice. Natasha was also attracted to this continent by its unique environment, marine life and how its existence is possible under these conditions.

By participating in the Students on Ice Antarctic University Expedition 2013, Natasha hopes to bring back a convincing message to her University peers and local community about the importance of looking after the local environment and the implication ignorance can have on other places around the world.

Photo of Fabrice BoucherFabrice Boucher
Universities of Bordeaux, Bilbao & Southampton

Fabrice is a 25 year old French student from Bordeaux. He is passionate about nature, fishing, sports and adventure. He has travelled around the world to discover people, cultures and landscapes. His curiosity in all sciences, economics and politics makes him aware of the importance of Antarctica.

He loves marine biology, even though he cooks fish well. He is in his last year of a European MSc programme in marine environment and resources. When he returns from the SOI expedition, he will start a Master’s thesis about fisheries and aquaculture research in San Diego (USA).

This expedition will be an amazing adventure and everybody around him is talking about it! He has always dreamed to discover Antarctica and will share his feelings and experiences with all his community.

Photo of Alex Booker

Alex Booker
University of Ottawa

I’m originally from Montreal, but I now attend the University of Ottawa and study geography. As with most people, I enjoy the outdoors, where I like to run and snowboard, among other things. I look forward to seeing glaciers in person, along with all the processes concerning glaciers. Throughout this expedition, I hope to gain a deeper understanding of the current state of glaciers in Antarctica, as well as implications of Antarctica on global climate. I also hope that this expedition will help me to narrow down an area of focus for graduate studies. 

Photo of Karley CampbellKarley Campbell
University of Manitoba

Karley graduated from the University of Lethbridge, Alberta, with a Bachelors in Environmental Science in 2010. She is currently pursuing her Masters in Science at the University of Manitoba where her research takes her to the Canadian Arctic to study ice algae. Karley has participated in a number of field campaigns ranging from water scarcity in the American southwest to studying Atlantic Salmon along the Newfoundland coast. She is looking forward to expanding her knowledge on the earth’s polar systems as well as the opportunity to experience such a unique environment.

Photo of Dominic ClarkeDominic Clarke
University of St Andrews

Dominic Clarke is a student from England. He is a student at the University of St Andrews enrolled in the Predator Ecology in Polar Ecosystems course.

Photo of Thomas CullenThomas Cullen
Carleton University

Thomas Cullen is a Masters student in Earth Sciences at Carleton University, with a passion for natural history and the outdoors. He enjoys wilderness camping, hiking, fishing, canoeing, and photography. His thesis research investigates the evolution of swimming behaviour in pinnipeds (seals, sea lions, and walruses), with particular interest in the transitional arctic fossil Puijila darwini. His long term research interests are to gain an understanding of evolutionary transitions in fossil vertebrates and the effects of the environment on their evolution and biogeography. He feels most at home when in the field, whether working on dinosaur sites in the badlands of Alberta or studying palaeoecology in the Canadian High Arctic. This voyage will provide him with a glimpse into the environment of the Antarctic, its natural history, and its similarities and differences to the Arctic.

Photo of Jacob DaviesJacob Davies
Queen's University

Jacob Davies is a student from Canada. He is a student at Queen's University and is enrolled in the University of Ottawa's Glaciology course.



Photo of Dominique deGroot

Dominique de Groot
McGill University

Dominique de Groot is an undergraduate student at McGill University, presently in her third year of studies, which focus on Economics and the Earth’s Environment.  Originating from Whistler, she now lives in Vancouver, British Columbia. Growing up in this international ski resort instilled in her a profound love for the outdoors and a respect for the environment. Dominique loves spending time outdoors, whether it’s hiking, skiing or spending time by the ocean, which she misses greatly when studying in Montréal. On this expedition, Dominique hopes to learn more about the unique importance of the Antarctic environment and its surrounding oceans.

Photo of Michel Desjardins

Michel Desjardins
Carleton University

Michel is from Ottawa and is studying Earth Science with a minor in chemistry at Carleton University. He is interested in geological processes and how they relate to the environment. His fascination with geology started when he found fossils in a local quarry as a child.

Michel has worked at a Scout camp for the past seven summers and this has given him the opportunity to be outdoors for a good portion of the year. The past two summers he has worked as the junior program director at the same summer camp. This has enabled him to study some of the natural history of the area with the Scouts and develop a natural history program based on local environmental studies. He enjoys educating people using hands on activities and has employed some of his scientific knowledge to design experiments for youth to engage them in science and the natural world.

Michel has always been outdoor-oriented, and has enjoyed canoeing in Frontenac Provincial Park and hiking the West Coast Trail. He is always interested in learning more about the natural history of areas he is exploring. Michel looks forward to integrating the study of geology, ecology and environmental science of the Antarctic region and is extremely excited about this expedition.

After the expedition Michel hopes to be able to teach Ottawa students about Antarctica and the effect of climate change on the Polar Regions.

Photo of Laura Drudi

Laura Drudi
McGill University

Laura Drudi (D.E.C. 2007; M.D., C.M. 2012) completed post-secondary studies in honors health science at Dawson College and was among 80 students chosen to enter into the 5-year medical program at McGill University. She is currently a third year medical student and her goal is to combine her passions for space and medicine in her pursuit to become a flight surgeon and apply new knowledge acquired to health care on Earth. She was chosen by the Canadian Space Agency to attend and present at the 2009 and 2010 International Astronautical Congress in the Republic of Korea and the Czech Republic respectively. She was also chosen as the 2010 NASA Academy Canadian recipient at Ames Research Center where she conducted research investigating the effects of spaceflight on the immune system.

Laura’s interests outside of aerospace medicine are varied. She is a varsity level rugby athlete and was recruited in 2006 and 2007 to the Quebec Elite Rugby Program, and selected for the National Championships. Laura has received leadership, research, and athletic awards, her most recent being McGill finalist and Quebec nominee for the Rhodes Scholarship, the 2010 Canadian Medical Association Young Leader Award, 2010 Space Medicine Association Student Leader Award, and the 2010 Order of Canada mentorship program recipient.

Photo of Shannon Fonk

Shannon Fonk
Carleton University

Shannon studies Earth and Environmental Science at McMaster University and has recently finished a study abroad term at the University of Wollongong, Australia. She is passionate about the environment and spending time outdoors. While at McMaster, she was involved within her program as an undergraduate teaching assistant, a member of the Geography and Earth Science society, and worked as a volunteer trip leader for the McMaster Outdoor Club. While working as a guide for the Outdoor Club, she was responsible for taking student groups on a variety of outdoor adventures and promoting environmental protection. Shannon is looking forward to learning about the overall evolution of Antarctica and its larger role in shaping the biosphere of the Earth. 

Photo of Kimberley Grave

Kimberley Grave
University of Oxford

Kim is from London, England and is an outdoors person enjoying all forms of sport and currently plays field hockey for a local club. Having lived in Argentina for 5 years, she has travelled from a young age around parts of South America, North America, Oceania and Europe. Recently she spent three weeks in Ecuador with the school, hiked through the Avenue of the Volcanoes and stayed in the Amazon Rainforest for a few nights. New Zealand and Fiji were also visited as part of a sports tour when she was fortunate enough to visit the International Antarctic Centre in Christchurch, New Zealand, where she was first inspired to visit the region. She has also had close encounters with whales, elephant seals and penguins in the South Atlantic and as a result is looking forward to seeing more of the wildlife in its natural habitat. Kim is on a gap year following the end of Senior School and will be reading Geography at the University of Oxford. She is passionate about her subject and having covered Cold Environments at school, is particularly interested in discovering the past, present and possible future effects of climate change in Antarctica as well as finding out more about the glacial processes that occur in the region. Following the expedition, she intends to pass on her experiences to inspire others and will utilise the academic experience to supplement her studies at university.

Photo of Harald HansenHarald Sakarias Brøvig Hansen
Norwegian University of Life Sciences

Harald was born in Stavanger, Norway, in 1988, and is currently working towards a BSc in Ecology and Natural Resource Management at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences (in Ås). The last five months he’s spent on exchange at the University of Copenhagen. He believes that first hand experience is the best way to learn, and in June 2010 he attended a field course in management of natural resources in the tropics in Tanzania.

He enjoys adventures and the outdoors; he likes spending time in the south of Norway to fish during the summers. After his BSc he wants to pursue a MSc with a marine focus. Coming from Norway with a history related to Arctic expeditions, and having a grandfather that was crew on a whaling expedition to Antarctica, he is very interested in learning more about the ecology of Antarctica, and other perspectives of this fantastic region. During the expedition he’s enrolled in the St Andrews polar ecology module.

Photo of Thomas Henbest

Thomas Henbest
Queen's University

As an aspiring physics student, novice tree planter, and music lover from the rural community of Chesterville, Ontario, I am thrilled to be a part of this expedition. Now in my second year at Queen's University, I spend much of my non-lab-and-lecture-hall time playing chess and designing rockets and satellites with the Queen's Space Engineering Team. In February 2009, I became engaged in the issue of climate change through a program called the International Climate Champions organized by the British Council. As a result, I have had the opportunity to work with youth from around the world in discussions on environmental problems and on projects aimed at developing solutions. My main focus has been on a project called ICCommit whose goal is to educate youth about climate change and encourage them to reduce their personal footprint.

Photo of Tara HoholTara Hohol
University of Alberta

My name is Tara Hohol and I'm in my 5th year (victory lap!) of Environmental Science. I grew up in the wonderful city of Calgary, and am a proud Flames fan.

I am really excited to be participating in this Antarctic expedition, and can’t wait for all the great experiences I know we’ll have.

Photo of Linnea Holmberg

Linnea Holmberg
Luleå University of Technology

Linnea Holmberg is 26 years old and comes from Sweden. She´s a second year student at Luleå  University of Technology in the Bachelor of Science in Experience Production program. She likes outdoor activities and adventures of all forms. She also loves music and animals. Linnea is a social person who is looking forward to meeting and interacting with new people. By participating on this expedition she hopes to develop herself and others. She considers this to be a once in a lifetime opportunity where she hopes to acquire important knowledge in an inspiring but fragile environment.

Photo of Janine HoustonJanine Houston
University of Alberta

Janine Houston is a student from Canada. She is a student at the University of Alberta enrolled in the Practical Study in Earth and Atmospheric Science course.





Photo of Sabine Laguë

Sabine Laguë
University of British Columbia

Sabine Laguë is a fifth year student at the University of British Columbia, in Vancouver, Canada, graduating this spring with an Honours BSc in Animal Biology and a Minor in Music. As a young scientist who is also a dedicated musician, Sabine exhibits a diverse range of interests.

Sabine’s upbringing in the Rockies of Cranbrook, BC was instrumental in developing her fascination with nature. Sabine enjoys being involved in her community through developing K-7 science education programs, volunteering at the BC Children’s Hospital, leading women’s small groups, and mentoring and training young leaders through UBC Orientations. As a talented flutist and soprano, one of Sabine’s greatest passions is music.

Sabine’s science degree at UBC has focused on comparative physiology, studying the adaptation of animals to life in extreme environments. Thus, this Antarctic expedition is a phenomenal opportunity for Sabine to gain practical experience and observe firsthand the physiological and ecological feats of Antarctica’s animals.

Sabine is particularly interested in cardiorespiratory strategies exhibited by vertebrates facilitating survival in low oxygen. Her honours thesis is exploring mechanisms of cardiac hypoxia tolerance in Nile tilapia, while her Masters degree will focus on a similar question in high altitude birds. Diving is another cause of hypoxia, and Antarctica is home to some remarkable divers. Studying the ecology of these animals will give Sabine a better understanding of their physiology and how it has promoted such athletic ability.

The skills and knowledge gained from participating in this expedition will complement the research pursued for both her Bachelor and Masters degrees, and Sabine looks forward to where this experience might lead her future research endeavors.

Photo of Athena Lao

Athena Lao
Harvard University

Athena Lao hails from Athens, Georgia, USA. She is a junior at Harvard University studying Classics and Ethnic Studies. Formerly Co-President of the Harvard-Radcliffe Asian American Association, Athena is a race and intercultural relations activist, and she currently serves as a Peer Advising Fellow, First-Year Urban Program Leader, Communications Course Assistant, and an intern at the non-profit WorldTeach. In her spare time, she enjoys piano, dance, and blogging. Athena has a passion for people, language, education, and travel (she'll have been to all 7 continents after SOI). Ultimately, Athena would like to pursue a career in International Education Administration/Policy and explore how education can promote cross-cultural awareness and sensitivity more effectively. She hopes that SOI will not only satiate her curiosity about Antarctica's ecology and the impact of human development in the area, but also will help her better integrate environmental advocacy into cultural studies curricula and education in the future. As a young girl, Athena thought that Antarctica was one of those places she could only read about. Now, she feels incredibly excited and privileged to learn about this beautiful continent first-hand with her fellow expedition-mates!

Photo of James Lawson

James Lawson
University of St Andrews

James Lawson is a keen environmentalist, enjoying all that the natural world offers. Taking pleasure in the beauty and value of nature both large and small, he often cites David Attenborough and Gerald Durrell as influences. He believes that a greater depth of knowledge of the environment by the wider world is the key to conservation success.

In his spare time James enjoys both sports and photography, where they frequently overlap one another during his position as both a contributing photographer to the University of St Andrews’ student newspaper, The Saint, and a member of the Athletic Union Media Team. James hopes that this fantastic expedition presented by Students on Ice will allow him to both experience a once in a lifetime opportunity of gaining first-hand experience researching the unique polar ecology, and be able to document the event in a unique photojournalistic fashion.

He hopes to share the experience with his fellow students, friends and any or all who care to learn of this experience through his photographs and story behind them.

Kathleen Leonard
University of St Andrews

Kathleen Leonard is a student from the United States. She is a student at the University of St Andrews enrolled in the Predator Ecology in Polar Ecosystems course.

Photo of Andrew Macumber

Andrew Macumber
Carleton University

Andrew Macumber, 28, is currently a PhD student at Carleton University. His thesis work involves reconstructing the climate of the past 3000 years in the southern Northwest Territories, principally focusing on the Tibbitt to Contwoyto Winter Road. This strategically important road is composed primarily of frozen lakes and represents the only overland infrastructure north of Yellowknife. Its future viability is uncertain, since the climate in the Polar region and how it can be impacted is so poorly understood. Over the course of his fieldwork he has fallen in love with the North, and thus it was an easy decision to explore its southern cousin, Antarctica. On the voyage he will have the chance to learn from many established climate science researchers and also take part in their research projects. When not dealing with frigid temperatures in the north, cooped up in his laboratory at Carleton or playing hockey, Andrew likes to participate in Science Outreach, with Let’s Talk Science and Science Travels. These programs send graduate volunteers to urban and rural schools to present science lessons in a fun and interactive way.

Photo of Aman Malik

Aman Malik
University School of Chemical Technology
GGS Indraprastha University

Aman is a second year student of Chemical Engineering at the Indraprastha University in New Delhi, India.

He first read about Students on Ice in his high school English textbook and from then on dreamed to go to Antarctica. He is extremely thankful to the staff of SOI, especially Niki and SOI Participant Coordinators before her, for they have been tackling his never ending questions for the past 3 years!

He has a great interest in anything pertaining to Science. In the 11th grade, all he knew was that he wanted to be an astrophysicist and then by a sudden transition a year later he became interested in the environment. As for the present, he wishes to be an Earth Scientist and understand the planet in totality.

He admits that his quite varied interests sometimes prove to be difficult in concentrating on his present studies but the never ending beauty of the Cosmos is just too much to miss. The most unusual thing that he perhaps did was tracking wild King Cobras as part of a telemetry project in the dense rain forest of the Western Ghats.

Aman greatly believes in the fact of knowledge sharing and is trying to achieve just that by being a mentor to high school students in an online international competition known as the Global Challenge Awards. He enjoys interacting with new people with different backgrounds. The expedition offers him with a such an opportunity and he is really excited about it!

In his free time Aman enjoys reading science fiction and playing cricket, while vacations are spent exploring forests and wildlife sanctuaries.

Photo of Chris McKnightChristopher McKnight
University of St Andrews

Chris McKnight is a student from Northern Ireland. He is a student at the University of St Andrews enrolled in the Predator Ecology in Polar Ecosystems course.

Photo of Katlin Miller

Katlin Miller
Colorado State University

Ever since Katlin was a little girl growing up on her family’s ranch in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, she has loved animals and the outdoors. Throughout her tenure at Colorado State University and since graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Wildlife Biology in 2008, Katlin has really gotten to opportunity to develop her passions for wildlife and traveling. In addition to working for the Colorado Division of Wildlife, she has traveled to Alaska, Namibia, Costa Rica, and the Netherlands to study and work with wildlife. Katlin is now contemplating going back to school to pursue a graduate degree in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation. While in Antarctica, she is eager to learn about the unique adaptations marine animals have evolved with to survive in harsh polar ecosystems; the effect global climate change is having on the structure and function of Antarctic marine food webs; and other threats facing the Antarctic ecosystem. Katlin is hoping the knowledge gained from this trip will inspire a research topic idea for graduate school and beyond.

Photo of Travis Mitchell

Travis Mitchell
Carleton University

Travis Mitchell, 25, is interested in the natural world and how it works. Over the past three years, his undergraduate and graduate work has brought him to places such as Europe and the Arctic multiple times. His Master's thesis investigates the depositional history of the world famous 5 million year old Beaver Pond Site on Ellesmere Island. His work uses a variety of approaches to reveal the secrets this site has to offer. After the invaluable research experiences offered on Ellesmere Island and in the Yukon, Travis cannot wait to explore the scientific highlights the Antarctic has to offer.

Photo of Jeremy PowellJeremy Powell
Carleton University

Jeremy Powell is a 4th year undergraduate student in Earth Sciences at Carleton University. Throughout his life he has always enjoyed hiking, canoeing, biking and any other activity that allowed him to be outside. Studying Earth Sciences at Carleton University has allowed him to combine this affinity for the outdoors with his interests in geology, biology and geography. Now that he is finishing the final year of his undergraduate studies, he hopes to pursue an MSc in carbonate sedimentology. 

He is excited about the voyage because it will provide him with an opportunity to study aspects of geology in a field environment that few students or professionals ever have the chance to visit. Learning from the experts on the trip about the geological history and future of Antarctica will be a truly invaluable experience.

Photo of Miriam Richer McCallumMiriam Richer McCallum
University of Ottawa

My name is Miriam Richer McCallum, I am a 23 year old student at the University of Ottawa. I am fascinated by the earth natural processes and that is why I am currently studying in geography and geomatic. I am hoping to further my studies in Cryospheric research.

Another passion of mine is travelling, to learn about different cultures, ecosystems and to get the chance to experience it all.

I am looking forward to learn about this captivating ecosystem and to share this experience with other fellow students.

Photo of Martina Rosenberg

Martina Rosenberg
Luleå University of Technology

Martina Rosenberg is a second year student in the Bachelor of Science program in Experience Production at Luleå University of Technology, Sweden. The program specializes in teaching production, management principles and relevant techniques for the experience industry.

Martina grew up in a small Swedish village close to the mountains where nature is still largely untouched by industrial society. She is intensely interested in outdoor and adventure activities like trekking, snowboarding, cross country skiing and ice climbing. She also has a longstanding interest in photography. During the Antarctic expedition Martina would like to learn more about the unique wildlife and the harsh, yet fragile, nature found around the South Pole. She firmly believes that it would be both interesting and effective to work with tourism experiences as a means of promoting environmental values.

Photo of Hannah SalomonsHannah Salomons
University of St Andrews

Hannah Salomans is a student from the United States. She is a student at the University of St Andrews enrolled in the Predator Ecology in Polar Ecosystems course.

Photo of Ian Scriver

Ian Scriver
Queen's University

Ian Scriver graduated from the Mathematics and Engineering program, focusing on Mechanical Engineering, at Queen’s University, and is currently in a Masters Degree in Applied Mathematics, also at Queen’s, studying control theory. Control theory is a field spanning applied mathematics and engineering which deals with manipulating dynamical systems to achieve desired states.

Ian, originally from Ottawa, grew up paddling with his family on lakes and rivers in Ontario, camping and skiing, and this instilled a deep respect for wilderness and a desire to protect the environment. Ian has spent several summers as a guide on canoeing and hiking trips such as on the Mountain River and in the Nahanni National Park in the Northwest Territories in Canada; as a guide he would take groups to amazing and remote regions of the Canadian north and use the unique and beautiful landscape to advocate environmental protection and environmentally responsible practices. Apart from working as a guide, Ian enjoys whitewater canoeing and kayaking, hiking, sea kayaking, and stand-up paddling.

In the winters, when not studying, Ian races in nordic skiing; he was the head coach for the Queen’s Varsity Nordic Ski Team during the past two seasons. Ian is excited to be a part of this expedition and feels privileged to explore and learn about the ecosystem of Antarctica.

Photo of Paul Scriver

Paul Scriver
Queen's University

Paul is a 3rd year student at Queen’s University studying Geology. The majority of his time is spent outdoors pursuing activities including whitewater paddling, Nordic skiing, surfing, hiking, biking, and anything else that is a great excuse to spend time outside. During the summer he works as a guide on canoe trips all over Canada, but mainly focused in the North West Territories for Blackfeather Wilderness Adventures. This Job has allowed him to explore much of the Canadian north and has given him a strong will to protect and educate people about Canada’s north. This expedition will be the chance of a lifetime to explore the other pole and make connections with the environmental concerns noticed in the North. He also hopes that this will be a great experience to share with his fellow students in the numerous open lecture series at Queen’s. He will also be able to share the experience with the participants on the trips he guides, which will be a unique chance to reach people who are involved in the outdoor community. In geology, Paul is particularly interested in the fields of glaciology and ground water. He is interested in pursuing a career in geology, but is not interested in being involved with mining and exploration. He is hoping that this trip will open his eyes to the potential careers related to these fields.

Photo of Logan Seaman

Logan Seaman
Carleton University

My name is Logan Seaman, and I’m a third year undergraduate neuroscience student and varsity water polo player at Carleton University. I was born in Windsor, Nova Scotia, but grew up in Kanata, just west of Ottawa. Academically, my interests focus mainly around neuroethology and animal behaviour; as well as other aspects of behavioural neuroscience and biology. Outside of school I enjoy swimming, rock climbing, canoeing, windsurfing and most other things outdoors. I have been lucky enough to have travelled to Europe, Asia, and Australasia, and can’t wait to experience South America, and most of all, Antarctica. I hope to gain a better appreciation for the Antarctic ecosystem and a greater understanding of the role it plays in the biosphere as a whole. After the expedition I intend to share my experiences with as many people as possible, as it promises to be a truly unique venture.

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Mya Sherman
McGill University

Mya Sherman is currently double majoring in Environmental Studies and Latin American and Caribbean Studies at McGill University. She is originally from Rhode Island and is in her third year at McGill. Mya would like to work in the public health field in the future after obtaining a masters degree in global health. Mya is passionate about traveling and environmental health issues. She has already worked extensively with international public health work in Guatemala, Argentina, Peru and Kenya, and has also traveled to South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. In addition to her strong interest in traveling, Mya is actively involved in extracurricular activities at McGill and plans to use these groups to advocate for polar issues. She is actively involved in a vegan food politics collective at McGill University that caters for environmental events in Montreal and in the McGill community. Mya is also the Co-President of the Latin American Studies departmental association this year. She plans to use her leadership position to emphasize the relationship between the Polar Regions and South America. Mya is interested in learning more about the human impact on Antarctica, specifically concerning its influence on ecosystem dynamics, the thermohaline circulation, and the ozone hole. She will use this Antarctic experience as a unique extension of her knowledge of South America. Mya also hopes this first-hand experience will help her in translating environmental research into policy in her future work with South America.

Raquel Soley Calvet
University of St Andrews

Raquel Soley Calvet is a student from Spain. She is a student at the University of St Andrews enrolled in the Predator Ecology in Polar Ecosystems course.

Photo of Tanya Taggart-HodgeTanya Taggart-Hodge
McGill University

Born in Montreal and raised in Victoria BC, I have been interested and involved in environmental issues since a young age. I am now a second year student at McGill University, completing an Arts & Science degree with a major in environment and a minor in anthropology. My interest for the polar regions was reinforced in 2009 when I partook in the SOI Arctic youth expedition. Following this experience, I worked for the Yukon Climate Change Secretariat as a research assistant. I have been involved in various committees, projects and conferences which encompassed values of sustainability. For example, I was a founding member of a youth run cooperative which sold fair trade and organic products. Since being at McGill, I have worked on the University's 5 year plan for sustainability as the VP Internal and am now the Intercampus Outreach Coordinator for McGill’s Student Society’s Environment Committee. In my spare time, I am passionate about sports such as basketball, soccer and hockey. I also enjoy playing the guitar, travelling, and building bridges between cultures and people. I am very excited to be a part of this expedition and I hope to expand my knowledge of Antarctica, glaciology, the Southern Ocean, climate change and the marine ecosystem surrounding Antarctica. Most importantly, I look forward to a life-changing experience and the opportunity to experience Antarctica in all its forms!

Photo of Erica VertefeuilleErica Vertefeuille
Queen's University

Erica Vertefeuille is a third year undergraduate student at Queen’s University studying Geological Engineering. Academically, she is interested in geophysics and the sustainable management of Earth’s resources. Her studies have taken her to northern Canada, where she gained an appreciation for the complex interaction between humans and the earth system. Erica joins this expedition looking forward to adventure, new friends, and the opportunity to learn about Antarctica first hand. Born and raised in Toronto, Ontario, Erica enjoys travelling, cooking and spending time with friends and family. 

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Stephanie Veinot
Wilfred Laurier University

Originally from Oshawa, Ontario, I currently reside in Gormley, Ontario. I am in my fourth year of study at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, majoring in Physical Geography. I participate in running a weekly Farmer’s Market on my campus which advocates local and/or organic products and environmental sustainability. I enjoy photography and can’t wait for the spectacular scenery and wildlife. Since my area of study is geography, I’d like to learn more about the geomorphology and geology of Antarctica, as well as the hydrological issues affecting climate change.

Photo of Adrienne WhiteAdrienne White
University of Ottawa

Adrienne White is a recent graduate from the University of Ottawa, where she completed a BA in Geography with a minor in Geomatics and Spatial Analysis. During her undergraduate degree, she developed an interest in cryospheric studies and remote sensing. Her participation in field courses and expeditions to the St Elias Mountain Range (Yukon), Tapado Glacier (Chile), the Ward Hunt Ice Shelf and Grise Fiord (Canadian High Arctic) have inspired her graduate studies in glaciology.

Adrienne is currently working towards completing a MSc in Physical Geography under the supervision of Dr. Luke Copland (University of Ottawa) and Dr. Derek Mueller (Carleton University). Her thesis will focus on completing the first comprehensive survey of the Petersen Ice Shelf in Nunavut, Canada. This survey will include ice thickness and mass balance measurements, while quantifying recent changes in surface area. Her study will use a variety of approaches including GPR, and specialized remote sensing techniques such as speckle tracking. In accomplishing this study, Adrienne aims to improve our understanding of ice shelf dynamics and the conditions leading to ice shelf collapse along the northern coast of Ellesmere Island.

Adrienne is currently an active member on the executive and student committees for CMOS (Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society) and is a participating member of ArcticNet. Outside of university, Adrienne has a passion for aviation and is currently pursuing a private pilot’s license. She also enjoys hiking, and travelling.

Photo of Jennifer WigginsJennifer Wiggins
University of St Andrews

Jenn is a final year undergraduate student at the University of St Andrews in Fife, Scotland, studying Behavioural Biology. Her main passion is travelling and in the past few years has been lucky enough to see some exciting places and meet interesting new people. She spent the last two summers abroad furthering her interest in Biology, in 2009 volunteering at the Centre for Dolphin studies in South Africa and in 2010 undertaking her final year research project on Hummingbirds in the Canadian Rockies.  These two experiences gave her the opportunity to travel, gain experience at scientific research in the field and furthered her enthusiasm for her subject. Jenn’s other interests include running, being outdoors, art and music. She has hosted a weekly radio show on the student run St Andrews Radio (STAR) for the past two years and regularly attends concerts. She is considering post-graduate studies for the future and sees this trip as a once in a lifetime learning experience and privilege. It also will give her a comprehensive view of what climate change means for Antarctica, and the challenges faced by those trying to protect it.

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Audrey Yank
McGill University

Born in Gatineau, in the province of Quebec, Canada, Audrey has been involved in environmental causes from a young age. Audrey describes herself as a cheerful and smiley francophone! This outdoorsy and sporty girl is presently completing her fourth year of studies in Bioresource Engineering at McGill University in Montreal. Audrey first witnessed the impact of climate change on local populations of the global south during an international development internship in Niger, West Africa, with Quebec Without Borders in 2007. Since that time, she has been more devoted towards climate action. Last year, Audrey also got the chance to carry out an undergrad research project related to alternative energy sources in Benin. Recognized by her peers as a leader, Audrey is passionate and likes to take the maximum out of what she undertakes. She has developed a real desire to make a difference through her different school and community involvements. Audrey was also part of the 2010 Canadian Youth Delegation that attended the United-Nations Conference on Climate Change (COP16) in Cancun, Mexico. There she represented the voice and views of Canadian youth at these international climate negotiations. During the SOI expedition, Audrey is really looking forward to learning more about our Earth’s ecosystem and to develop a new perspective on climate change issues. She believes that understanding and experiencing are key drivers of her dedication. Audrey is considering undertaking graduate studies in this field and SOI may be an opportunity to confirm her choice.

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Carly Ziter
University of Guelph

Growing up in Windsor, Ontario, I could typically be found figure skating or coaching at the local arena in the winter, and on the track or soccer pitch throughout the summer. My interest in athletics was accompanied by an interest in nature and a passion for reading; some of my favourite childhood memories are of family trips “up north” where I could hike, swim, canoe, or simply enjoy the outdoors with my nose in a book. My concern for the environment, and determination to make a difference, grew after a high school biology trip to Monteverde, Costa Rica. Consequently, I am now a 4th year Environmental Biology and Statistics student at the University of Guelph, where I am involved with several environmental advocacy groups. Over the past 3 summers, I have had the opportunity to conduct research at the Great Lakes Institute for Environmental Research in Windsor, and the Cowichan Garry Oak Preserve on Vancouver Island, experiences which have increased my desire to pursue a career in environmental research. I plan to continue my environmental education by pursuing a Masters degree next fall. I am also interested in sustainable living, especially sustainable eating and purchasing choices, am passionate about traveling, and enjoy art, baking, volunteering, and hanging out with my family, friends, and dog! I have always wanted to see Antarctica, and am thrilled to be able to participate in what is sure to be an eye-opening and extremely educational experience with Students on Ice!

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