Arctic Series 2021

This  K-16 Educator Workshop Series (details below) will introduce educators to the Arctic today, including the role of Arctic Indigenous peoples in international relations, their communities and languages. University of Washington’s network of scholars in Arctic and Indigenous studies will provide a historic context for the circumpolar world as well as address the role of ice in nature and culture and the tremendous impact of climate change in the region.

On February 10th, the K-16 Educator Workshop Series was kickstarted by a public lecture, The Climate Change Emergency and Gwitchin Leadership, with Dana Tizya-Tramm, Chief, Vuntut Gwitchin Government, Old Crow, Yukon in discussion with Kevin Turner, Brock University, 2020-21 UW Fulbright Canada Chair in Arctic. You may read more about the talk and Chief Dana Tizya-Tramm below. 

All K-16 educators from U.S. institutions are invited to participate in the educator workshop series (small registration fee required for educator series). All series participants will receive a comprehensive Arctic Series 2021 Curriculum Resource Guide.

Washington State educators may apply for up to 11 clock hours upon completion of the series. 




Thursdays | February 25th – March 25th, 2021 | 4:00 – 6:00 PM PST

Virtual | Small registration fee required.

Washington State educators may apply for up to 11 clock hours upon completion of the series & will receive a comprehensive Arctic Series 2021 Curriculum Resource Guide.


Session 1 | February 25 | Inuit Homelands & Arctic Indigenous Peoples

Session 2 | March 4 | Ice & Climate Change

Session 3 | March 11 | Leadership & Communities

Session 4 | March 18 | Language & Education

Session 5 | March 25 | The Arctic in the Classroom: Innovative Teaching Strategies & Resources

Learn more about the series and  speakers, and register for sessions, here.


PUBLIC LECTURE | The Climate Change Emergency and Gwitchin Leadership

Tuesday, February 9th, 2021 | 4:00 – 5:30PM PST

In this “fireside chat,” Chief Dana Tizya-Tramm and Dr. Kevin Turner, discussed emerging issues and priorities identified by the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation in the face of global challenges. Diverse topics included efforts to conserve the Porcupine Caribou Herd, adjustments during a pandemic, and pathways for unifying traditional insight of changing climate and landscapes with ongoing science-based monitoring approaches.

The Arctic landscape is changing dramatically as a result of rising temperatures. In early May 2019, the UK was the first nation-state to declare a climate change emergency. Later that month, the Gwitchin First Nation, Yukon, was the first Indigenous community to draft a similar declaration: Yeendoo Diinehdoo Ji’heezrit Nits’oo Ts’o’ Nan He’aa (“After Our Time, How Will the World Be?”). Chief Dana Tizya-Tramm (pictured below) of the Vuntut Gwitchin Government, the youngest person to hold the title, declared a climate change state of emergency.  The declaration calls on all levels of government to respect the traditional knowledge of Indigenous people, science and “utilize all available powers, resources and abilities to coordinate and mobilize efforts” to prevent temperatures from rising further.

To the climate change emergency are added the issues now facing the Porcupine Caribou Herd particularly with the recent auctioning off of portion of the National Wildlife Refuge to oil developers. In addition to the impact this development will have on global warming, the Vuntut Gwitchin community of Old Crow is located on the migratory path of the Porcupine Caribou. As a result, the caribou have played a key role in the economy and culture for thousands of years. However, for Tizya-Tramm, the hopeful part about these challenges is that they “call on the foundation of our great country of Canada’s intention for Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples to become one nation together for all of our grandchildren.”



About the speaker:

Chief Dana Tizya-Tramm was elected Chief of the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation in November of 2018 and took office January of 2019. According to a recent article in UpHere today, at age 32 Tizya-Tramm is a leading voice on how climate change is impacting the North. He travels the world hoping to inspire other Indigenous land and water protectors.

This five-part series is sponsored by the World Affairs Council, Seattle; the Pacific Northwest National Resource Center on Canada (Canadian Studies Center/Arctic and International Relations, Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies, University of Washington and the Center for Canadian-American Studies, Western Washington University), the Center for American Indian and Indigenous Studies, the Center for Global Studies, Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies, University of Washington, and the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies.
This event is made possible, in part, by Title VI grant funding administered by the International and Foreign Language Education office in the Office of Postsecondary Education, U.S. Department of Education.