University of Washington

Arctic Minors

We are very excited to announce the first generation of the new Arctic Studies minors! The purpose of this minor is for undergraduates to have an opportunity to gain skills relevant to addressing major science and policy issues in the Arctic. The minor will train students to work with international organizations, national governments, and sub-national organizations and/or to pursue graduate study at the intersection between science and policy in the polar regions. Students enrolled in the minor will have priority over course registration that is related to the minor and will also be featured in the Canadian Studies Center's Quarterly newsletter. It's a great joy to have this new minor running and we are happy to announce students enrolled in the minor! 

2015-2016 Arctic Minors


Cory Baranski, International Studies (Environmental Studies track),  Arctic Studies Minor

Chloe Bergstrom, Political Science, Arctic Studies Minor  and Environmental Studies Minor

Washington has been my home all my life and I am so grateful for the opportunities this area presents. I've gained a love for nature and had the chance to experience cutting edge research on the Arctic at UW. I hope to combine my studies to work with international environmental affairs, particularly those pertaining to the Arctic region. The policy side of this field is complex and dynamic and I will work to bridge the gap between natural sciences and politics in order to preserve the North and look for a more sustainable future.

Jake Creps, International Studies (Environmental Studies track),  Arctic Studies Minor 

The arctic is a very dynamic and important region. Each year, the problems in the arctic seem to grow. I really enjoy problem solving and the arctic region is something I have been interested in since I was a very young age. The arctic studies minor is a great opportunity offered at the University of Washington. I hope to connect with like-minded people who are equally interested in not only learning more about the arctic region, but helping in solving the problems that are present there. I learned about the arctic minor option at my orientation at the University of Washington. I knew that I was already interested in the environmental studies track offered at the Jackson School and came to the conclusion that an arctic studies minor would be a great compliment to that. After meeting with an advisor and meeting Dr. Fabbi, I knew that I was making the right choice.

Natasha Haycock-Chavez, Economics, Germanics and Arctic Studies Minor 

I'm from Bellingham, WA but have been spending every summer in Alaska for the past four years, working as a crew member on a whale-watching and glacier charter cruise. Each day we visit Colombia glacier, which is the most active tidewater glacier in North America. Seeing this massive glacier shrink and being surrounded by ice on the daily, definitely sparked my interest in the Arctic. I took Nadine's Future of Ice seminar my sophomore year out of curiosity, and after completing the course, I was sold! I hope to somehow incorporate my interest in the Arctic in my future travels and work.

Marine Lebrec, Oceanography, Marine Biology Minor & Arctic Studies Minor 

I am finishing up my junior year majoring in oceanography and minoring in marine biology. I have experience researching deep sea hydrothermal vent sites and am extremely interested in how organisms survive in such extreme habitats, similarly to the Arctic. I am passionate about climate change and have studied micro plastics in New Zealand waters. I am interested in finding ways to incorporate scientific data into making changes in Arctic policy as anthropogenic forces are changing this region of the world drastically. I would love to eventually do research in the Arctic to better understand this valuable part of the world.


 Kris Thompson


2014-2015 Arctic Minors


Miya Pavlock McAuliffe, Oceanography, Arctic Studies Minor 

Expected graduate: Spring 2016

Nirupam Nigam, Aquatic and Fishery Science and General Biology Major, Arctic Studies Minor 

My foremost love in the world is anything that lives underwater. Consequently, I am a double major in Aquatic and Fisheries Science and General Biology. My interests in the arctic began while spending 7 weeks in Aleknagik and Pedro Bay, Alaska studying salmon with the School of Aquatic and Fisheries science. Although we were closer to the Aleutians than we were the Arctic Circle, it was there that I realized just how different northern life and culture is from the lower 48. Moreover, I find the ecosystems at these northern climes to be very different and very interesting, and definitely something that I would like to learn more about.


Arctic Minor Alumni

Walter O'Toole, English Major, Arctic Studies Minor 
Graduated: Fall 2014
2013-2014 Minor

My major is English, and I’m excited to see how these two fields of study will intersect. I’m interested in the ways literature and language relate to Arctic identities and cultures. I’m particularly interested in the oral literature of the Inuit, both in its traditional forms and in its presence in contemporary Arctic literature. Additionally, the relationships between people and wildlife are fascinating to me, and I look forward to exploring these in the context of the Arctic and in my own writing.


Arctic & International Relations
Box 353650
Thomson Hall, Room 503
Seattle, WA 98195-3650
T (206) 221-6374
F (206) 685-0668
Vincent Gallucci, Chair
Nadine Fabbi, Associate Director
Monick Keo, Webmaster