The Arctic & Northern Studies program provides students the opportunity to study some of the world’s most pressing problems in one of the world’s most beautiful settings.
More than ever before, research critical to humanity’s survival is taking place in the Arctic and sub-Arctic. In recent years, as climate change has threatened the global environment, the world’s eyes have turned to the Arctic, where the pace of warming is more than double that elsewhere in the world. Residents of the circumpolar north don’t have to imagine how climate change might affect them in a decade or two. Communities are already experiencing the devastating effects of coastal erosion, sea ice melt, crumbling infrastructure resulting from melting permafrost, and the most destructive wildfires on record. A recent study by the National Academy of Sciences predicted costs to Alaskan infrastructure alone in the billions of dollars through the 21st century. The socio-cultural costs extend far beyond these numbers.