Student cruises Arctic, Greenland in July

NANAIMO – No matter what the forecast, Caitlin Jakobsen is going to have a cool summer.

Caitlin Jakobsen

Caitlin Jakobsen

It doesn’t matter what the long range forecast for summer temperatures might be – for Nanaimo’s Caitlin Jakobsen, it’s going to be cool in more ways than one.

The Grade 11 student at Wellington Secondary School is one of 70 high school students from around the world accepted for the Students on Ice program.

The group will spend July 14-28 aboard the Russian research vessel Akademik Ioffe, exploring west coast of Greenland, the eastern Canadian Arctic, including Baffin Island and the Northwest Passage.

Along with the students,  the team includes 35 world-class scientists, historians, artists, explorers, polar experts, authors/journalists, educators and innovators, as well as 30 public and private sector leaders.

“The goal of the expedition is to help youth foster a new understanding and respect for the planet, working on our leadership skills so that we can help collaborate and come up with solutions to the problems facing our planet today, such as global climate change,” said  Jakobsen. “My goals upon returning are to teach people in my schools and beyond all about the Arctic and my experience there, with the hopes that I can inspire other future environment leaders (or just leaders in general) in my community.”

Cost of the expedition is $10,000, and though Jakobsen has raised $5,000, she needs the community’s help in raising the other half.

A beer and burger night has been organized at the Wellington Pub May 23, and Jakobsen has an account at the Return-it Depots under Students on Ice. She is also looking for sponsorships in the community.

Anyone wanting more information about Jakobsen, the expedition and her fundraising efforts, can check out her blog at nanaimoarcticexplorer.blogspot.ca or e-mail nanaimoarcticexplorer@gmail.com.