The volunteer efforts of the JIRP Field Staff are the heart and soul of running this successful, safe, and inspiring field program. These folks support the JIRP mission all season by spearheading the safety training, overseeing the operations of each camp, and supporting JIRP students and faculty in research efforts (along with so much more!). The 2016 crew begin to arrive in Juneau this week for pre-season skills and emergency medical training at Camp 17. This year's crew is thrilled to kick off another fantastic season on the Juneau Icefield!
Originally a student in 2008, I knew immediately that the icefield was a place to which I would return. I have been working on the staff side of life since 2010, and have filled roles from safety staff to carpenter to operations manager. I have a BA in geology from Colby College, and although I worked and taught in the sciences for several years, I am now working as a finish carpenter/woodworker.The environment and community that combine to make the JIRP experience are totally unique and inspiring, and getting to share these things with a whole new group of folks every year is incredibly exciting and satisfying!
Soooooooooooooo my name is Tristan and I'm hailing from the forest of Warner, New Hampshire. I was a student on JIRP in 2014 and despite all the sunburns and ski wipe-outs and the (occasionally) abysmal Icefield weather, I was so inspired by the Icefield grandeur and the incredible people I met that I returned in 2015 as a JIRP safety staff member. I graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 2015 with a hard won degree in Earth Science- Climate and plans to return to graduate school in a few years to study the melting parts of the planet. My worst fear is getting attacked by a water snake so I try to avoid dark murky water at all costs. I enjoy watching sunsets, eating cheese, and skiing uphill. JIRP has inspired me to embrace cold, rainy weather and to experience the high and cold landscapes of Earth beyond the textbooks. This summer as staff again I am most looking forward to seeing the helicopters do aerial tricks after they bring supplies up to the Icefield.
I am very excited to be returning to JIRP for the third time this summer! I was a student in the summer of 2014, and a junior safety staff member in the summer of 2015, during which I had a blast leading JIRP's longstanding mass balance program with fellow staffer Annika Ord. I was born and raised in Western Canada, but am currently in my 5th and final year at Columbia University in NYC. I will be graduating in May with undergraduate degrees in Earth Science and Mechanical Engineering. I'm planning to take time off to travel next year, then eventually work in aviation mechanics before pursuing my helicopter's license. I love helicopters, and love having the chance to talk to the helicopter pilots who support JIRP! This summer I am most looking forward to meeting another great group of inspirational students. A lot of cool changes are continuously being made in the program thanks to its dedicated higher-ups, and I never stop being proud to be able to associate myself with a program that has had such a positive, lasting influence on so many people!
My name is Annie Boucher. I first came to JIRP as a student in 2012. I've been involved with the program since then, working as field staff, helping out with academics, and doing research for my master's thesis on glacial erosion. I grew up in Brooklyn, NY, graduated from Carleton College in 2011 with a B.A. in Geology, and I'm finishing up my M.Sc. at the University of Maine.
This summer I'm going to be active both on the day-to-day logistics/operations side of the program, and on the academic side. I'm excited to work with Kristin Timm to teach science communication and literacy. After graduate school I hope to find a job as a high school science teacher; I'm passionate about exploring the common ground between teaching science and teaching scientists how to communicate their research. JIRP has been instrumental in showing me the advantages of place-based, experiential education. I'm thrilled to be able to help continue that mission and to introduce a new group of students to a part of the world that has inspired so many people.
My list of favorite things about JIRP is long and varied, but I always look forward to the jaw-dropping sunsets on the icefield. There's nothing more satisfying than a bunch of tired JIRPers drinking hot chocolate together and watching a the sun go down over the Taku Glacier. Other than that, I'm always excited for pancake breakfasts looking out over the Gilkey Trench, trying to conduct synchronized dance routines on skis, and sleeping outside under the northern lights at the end of the summer.
Lara Hughes-Allen is a recent graduate in Geographic Information Systems Technology Master’s Program at the University of Southern California. She graduated from Pitzer College in 2011 with a double major in Environmental Biology and Geology. In the summer of 2015, she participated in the Juneau Icefield Research Program where her passion for glaciology and arctic climate research was solidified. Previously, Lara was a researcher for the Institute for Bird Populations, studying the foraging habits of Black-backed Woodpeckers, a contender for the Endangered Species List. She also worked as a researcher for Under the Trees, a privately owned forest research firm, which conducts carbon inventories and forest management inventories for private and public landowners. A level two PSIA certified ski instructor, she is currently a ski instructor and training assistant at Northstar Ski Resort in Lake Tahoe, CA. Lara is interested in using GIS to analyze the effects of recent anthropogenic climate change on the condition and extent of glaciers and the long-term implication of these changes on surrounding watersheds.
I first participated in JIRP as a student the summer of 2015, my focus was mass balance research, one of the many ongoing projects on the Icefield. This upcoming summer I will be working alongside Deb Gregoire as a main logistics lead down in Juneau, this means that I will be helping coordinate various aspects of off field necessities, anything from loading helicopter shipments or shopping for food to send up to the camps, the list goes on, but my main goal is to help ensure on field success. I am currently finishing my second year of undergrad at the University of Miami, where I am a double major in Ecosystem Science and Policy as well as International Studies. My ultimate goal as far as education goes is to end up in law school, focusing on environmental law.
It may seem that JIRP is not applicable to my specific area of interest, but after my experience in the field last summer I can confirm that this program teaches you so much more than the various aspects of glaciers. During JIRP you learn how to both mentally and physically push yourself past any limits you previously had; the personal growth I went through because of JIRP has forever shaped me and made me a better person, and not only did I grow as a person, but academically my growth was astronomical. Actually being in the field and applying the concepts you learn in the classroom to the real thing changed my entire thinking process, I learned that there are so many different ways to approach your research and that none of those ways are right or wrong, they are just another layer of data collection on something as mysterious yet intriguing as a glacier. I believe that anyone can grow from this experience and I hope that this upcoming season the incoming students really get that amazing experience of personal and academic growth. I know that this season is going to be awesome and I can't wait to see how much everyone grows together as a team from Juneau to Atlin.
Annika grew up in a commercial fishing family, floating between Juneau and their remote cabin on the Chilkat Peninsula in Southeast Alaska. Since graduating from Carleton College in 2014 with a degree in biology, Annika has returned to her Southeast homeland to walk the outer coast, snorkel in kelp forests, and make art about this wildly inspiring place. This past year, she spent at the Island Institute in Sitka developing a place-based documentary film program for young Alaskans and organizing a ferry tour that explored links between climate change and culture in Southeast. Annika is excited to return to JIRP for her third summer, and cannot wait to dig some burly snow pits and share the magic of the icefield with the next bunch of JIRPers.
My name is Matt Pickart. I first came to JIRP as a student in 2011, and came back as field staff in 2013 and 2014. After a one-year hiatus, I’m excited to return for another icefield summer in 2016.
I majored in Earth Sciences at Dartmouth College, and participated in glaciological research both as a student on JIRP and for my senior project. After graduating, however, I have mostly pursued other interests; I have spent the last year and a half in Europe for postgraduate study in French and Spanish. One of my favorite parts about JIRP is turning off my computer and phone for two months!
Hello! I'm Allie Strel, hailing from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. I am currently a master's student in Munich, Germany where I'm studying cartography, GIS and remote sensing. I'm a total map geek but I still get most excited about glaciers, mountains and cold places, so I'm always looking for ways to connect cartography with polar/alpine sciences.
My experiences as a JIRP student last year were so amazing that I couldn't stay away! This summer, I'm looking forward to disconnecting (from emails, smartphones, laptops, and daily showering) and reconnecting (with the great energy and people of JIRP)!