University of Washington

Arctic Alumni

Alumni from the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Task Force on the Arctic and the Canadian Studies Center's Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship in Inuktitut, have gone on to pursue higher education in Arctic studies and secure professional positions in Arctic-related organizations. Find below stories from our most successful alumni!

Choe, Victoria (2011 Task Force on Arctic Governance)
BA, International Studies & Program on the Environment (2012)
Thesis: Sustainable Socio-Economic Development: Indigenous Peoples in the Russian North
Faculty Supervisor: Nadine Fabbi, Canadian Studies
Current Position: MA student, Public Administration and International Relations Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University; Pickering Fellow (8/12)

Sustainable Socio-Economic Development (Spr. 2012)
Task Force on Arctic Sovereignty New Journey (11/12)
Task Force Alum Interns at Arctic Council Office (07/13)

Grosman, Jennifer (2011 Task Force on Arctic Governance)
BA, International Studies (2012)
Current Position: Program Coordinator for the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region

Alumna Continuing Experience from the 2011 Task Force

Maltais, Dominic (2011 Task Force on Arctic Sovereignty)
BA, International Studies (2011)
Current Position: Master’s student, Political Science, McGill University; Secrétariat aux affaires autochtones, Government of Québec (liaison between the Government of Québec and Inuit of Nunavik)

TF Students Team up in Nunavik, Québec (08/12)
Internship with the Government of Québec (03/12)
Student creates ties with the Gov't of Québec (Win. 2012)

Tim Pasch

Pasch, Timothy (2005-2008 FLAS Fellow)
PhD., Communication (2008)
Thesis: Inuktitut Online in Nunavik: Mixed Methods Web-Based Strategies for Preserving Aboriginal and Minority Languages
Current Position: Assistant Professor, Communication Program, University of North Dakota (09/12)

FLAS Fellow in Inuktitut, Now on ACSUS Board (06/13)
FLAS Fellow Edits Book in Canadian Studies (12/12)
Tim Pasch (Inuktitut 2005-08) (02/12)
FLAS Alum, Tim Pasch Introduces New Media to Arviat in Inuktitut! (06/13)


July 2013
Task Force Alum Interns at Arctic Council Office of Ocean and Polar Affairs in the State Department
by Jeung Hwa (Victoria) Choe, Thomas R. Pickering Graduate Fellow; intern, U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs, Office of Ocean and Polar Affairs

Victoria Choe and Julia Gourley, Senior Arctic Official of the United States and U.S. representative to the Arctic Council, pose at a breakfast at the Canadian Embassy, Washington, DC to celebrate Canada Day.

Victoria Choe with colleagues from the Task Force Alum Interns at Arctic Council Office of Ocean and Polar Affairs in the State Department.

In winter of 2011, I participated in Task Force on Arctic Governance. During a week-long research trip to Ottawa, Canada, I learned about a career in the Foreign Service. That same year, I applied for the Thomas R. Pickering Fellowship to pursue a career in the Foreign Service and to acquire Master’s degrees in Public Administration and International Relations at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University. My task force experience has greatly influenced where I am today! Currently, I am interning at the U.S. Department of State in the Office of Ocean and Polar Affairs. I am working with Julia Gourley, Senior Arctic Official of the United States, who was the evaluator for the 2011 Task Force on Arctic Governance. My main responsibilities in the office are to assist with strategic planning for the U.S. Arctic Council Chairmanship in 2015-2017. It has been very rewarding to see how scholarly work contributes to the policy-making process.

Task Force is the capstone course for the International Studies major. The first Task Force on Arctic Canada was offered in 2009. The Winter 2011 Canada Task Force was entitled, "Melting Boundaries: Rethinking Arctic Governance" co-instructed by Vincent Gallucci, Aquatic and Fishery Sciences and Nadine Fabbi, Canadian Studies Center. Victoria served as Coordinator. In Winter Quarter 2013, the Arctic Canada Task Force, "Arctic Securities," will focus on Québec’s role in the Arctic.















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June 2013
Tim Pasch Introduces New Media to Arviat in Inuktitut!

In June, Timothy Pasch, FLAS Fellow in Inuktitut (yrs here) and now Assistant Professor in Communications at University of North Dakota, gave a lecture on digital media in Inuktitut for the Digital Humanities program at the Arviat Research Support Center, Nunavut Arctic College, in Arviat, Nunavut.

“I am so grateful that you showed so much interest in Inuit language and culture and meeting with so many people both with our youth and elders,” Pelagie Owlijoot, Manager, Curriculum Development, Nunavut Arctic College, wrote in a thank you letter to Tim, “Although your stay was short we shared a lot of discussions and you have helped us initiate to bring our community closer together.”

Article published by University of North Dakota (

Professor Tim Pasch spent his summer in the Canadian arctic researching and recording voices of the Inuit
by Kate Menzies

Timothy Pasch, UND Communication program professor, did not spend his summer like most.

He packed his bags and took to the Arctic ice to help preserve the language and culture of the Inuit.

He brought with him his digital media tools and expertise in the areas of still image and video, audio, social media, web- and mobile app design to preserve and broadcast the voices of the Inuit.

With citizenship in two countries ― Canada and the United States ― Pasch understands the role communication plays within a culture.

"I came to realize that the ability to speak different languages is a great treasure of life, and that culture is inextricably linked to language," said Pasch, who speaks French and Japanese fluently.

While working on his Ph.D. at the University of Washington, Pasch had the opportunity from a FLAS grant to study the Inuit language of Inuktitut near the Arctic Circle of Canada ― the first person to receive this type of grant to study a First Nations language. "First Nations" is the Canadian equivalent term for Native Americans.

Pasch lived with an Inuit family in the Nunavik community of Inukjuak, a part of Arctic Quebec, to research the effects of social networking on the Inuktitut language.

Pasch discovered that communities across the Canadian Artic were experiencing dramatic changes: languages and cultural identities were vanishing. Pasch researched the history of the Canadian Artic, only to find a recent past filled with social upheavals.

Pasch theorizes that teaching digital communication technologies in the Arctic may help prevent certain human rights concerns from reoccurring there.

"Having seen how quickly language can be lost, and how challenging it can be to teach language, I became focused on adapting technologies for endangered language learning; through recording and broadcasting cultural knowledge and awareness," said Pasch.

For Pasch, communication is an important facet of cultural preservation. The loss of a language can result in loss of knowledge and wisdom accumulated over generations.

In June, Pasch recorded two Inuit Elders with several high definition recording devices as they described their advice for young Inuit preparing for an extended hunt on the land. Around that time, two young Inuit passed away on a snowmobile trek because they had not adequately prepared for their journey. A young girl fell through cracks in the ice on the Hudson Bay while Pasch was in Arviat.

"These elders have great concern for future generations of Inuit," said Pasch. "However as Inuktitut has principally been an oral language until recently, it has not always been preserved in writing."

Pasch created a model for Arctic New Media Convergence in the Digital Humanities to train and encourage young Inuit to use the technologies of still image and video, audio, social media, web- and mobile app design to preserve and broadcast the voices of the Inuit Elders, while sharing their own.

"Seeing these students become so excited and animated while using technology to create new media forms in their own language was immensely rewarding on both scholarly and spiritual levels," said Pasch.

Pasch has shared his research in the Kivalliq News, CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corp.) North and Twitter feeds across the Circumpolar Arctic.

"I am exceedingly grateful for these connections and the ability to broadcast my thought that the fact that the Northwest Passage is becoming navigable makes the Inuit voice more important and valuable than ever," said Pasch.

His work with our northern neighbors doesn't stop there.

Pasch was recently appointed to the Board of Directors for the Association for Canadian Studies in the United States (ACSUS), as representative for Communication and Arctic Affairs. He also co-authored a book with Kyle Conway, also a UND Communication professor, titled Beyond the Border; which focuses on the border between the U.S. and Canada and was published this summer by McGill-Queens University Press.

Now, Pasch is working on an Arctic initiative to take place at UND later this fall. This will be a joint venture between UND, the Consulate General of Canada in Minneapolis, the Nunavut Arctic College and other Arctic-focused partners, that will celebrate the centennial anniversary of the Canadian Arctic Expedition (CAE) of 1913 that was led by UND alum Vilhjalmur Stefansson.

Pasch will bring his Arctic experiences to the classroom by discussing his research findings. He hopes that he will be able to inspire students to learn about different cultures by studying a foreign language or having international involvements through study abroad or research opportunities.

"For me as faculty, there was a true sense of coming full circle in this visit, in that many of my theories and speculations regarding technologies for cultural preservation came to life this summer on the upper northwest coast of the Hudson Bay," said Pasch.

Poster for Summer Presentation: here

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Arctic & International Relations
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