A robin captured by mist net in Slave Lake, Alberta, and fitted with a backpack GPS transmitter. Photo by Brian Weeks.
Ned Rozell

While walking the streets of Washington, D.C., last month, a pleasant sound stopped me. A male robin was singing, high in a sidewalk sycamore.

It was December, months away from when that bird would use the same voice to declare his breeding territory. I wondered why he practiced now, as I stood amid the urban noise and listened to a melody that transported me back to April in Alaska.

Later that day, at the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union, I sat in on a talk by Ruth Oliver, a graduate student at Columbia University who has studied the most common songbird on the continent as it makes its way to Alaska.

In the office of Victoriya Forsythe, a postdoctoral fellow
studying high-latitude ionosphere at the GI. Victoriya is also mom to
her 10-month-old daughter Aurora. Photo by Kelly Eagan.
Kelly Eagan

“I used to spend a lot of time doing CrossFit, Olympic weightlifting, skiing and running. I even ran a marathon. Now I have a 10 month old daughter, and she’s completely changed my life. I can just sit and stare at her. It's fantastic. I never had baby fever. Now, the whole world for me is just around my baby. Every day there's something new. She started walking very early; she runs already and rides her rocking pony.

My way towards science was very long and wavy. In my twenties I used to be a tattoo artist. Back then, my mom said, ‘No tattoos for you.’ I wanted one -- I wanted a sleeve! But I respect my mother! So I don't have tattoos myself. I could never decide what exactly I wanted: it should be something like a big life event or something that I would not regret. But it's so hard to choose. It should be something very unique, very personal. I thought the birth of my daughter would inspire me, but actually, it doesn't match with the tattoos at all, and I'm further from that dream to have a tattoo than closer!”

Alaska Teacher Placement is holding its first advertisement contest this fall in video, audio and print ad categories, with $10,500 in cash prizes, including $2,000 for first-place winners.

The contest highlights unique aspects of living and working in Alaska to encourage potential K-12 teachers to come to Alaska. Contestants are to enter an ad that conveys the Alaska message in any of the video (TV), audio (radio) and print (magazine) categories. Students on all University of Alaska campuses are encouraged to enter.

The first-place winners’ products will be showcased at various ATP events where prospective and current K-12 teachers, administrators and school personnel from all over the country gather. Products will also be viewable via the ATP website.

The submission deadline is Jan. 31, 2019. Application guidelines, submission and prize details can be found at the K-12 outreach website.

Established in 1978 as a partnership between the University of Alaska and school districts, Alaska Teacher Placement has served as a statewide education job clearinghouse for Alaska, matching current and prospective teachers and administrators seeking positions with the districts that need them.

Contact Toni McFadden, Alaska Teacher Placement manager, at 907-450-8438 or uaf-atp@alaska.edu for more information.

Would you like to know when all the cool science events are happening at UAF? When you’re putting on a cool science event would you like help getting that information out?

The UAF Science Calendar posts information on science lectures, seminars, workshops, thesis/dissertation defenses, special events and other UAF science-related activities. Submit calendar items by email to UAF-SciCal@alaska.edu. Please include the name of the event, the sponsoring unit, name and affiliation of the presenter, location, date, start and end times, and a contact person's name, email address and/or phone number. Information can be submitted well in advance of the event as long as any changes to the information are also submitted as they become known.

How to subscribe to the Science Calendar

  • Visit http://www.cgc.uaf.edu/calendar.html to view the UAF Science Calendar
  • At the bottom-right corner of the calendar there is a Google Calendar widget (with a white-on-blue 'plus' sign). Click on the link.
  • Your calendar will pop up in your browser, with a prompt to "Add calendar." Click "Add." The UAF Science Calendar should now appear in the list on the left of your calendar labeled "Other calendars."

If you are logged into two Google accounts at once, for example your UA account and your personal account, the UAF Science Calendar may appear in the wrong one. If so, log out of all Google accounts except for the one that you wish to modify, OR log into it in a different browser, and repeat steps 2 and 3.

If you have questions about the science calendar, email UAF-SciCal@alaska.edu.

Are you interested in a free, fun way to get out of the house and learn about science that affects you, your community and the state? The Science for Alaska Lecture Series has you covered.

This year we have topics including Fairbanks' particulate problem, Alaska's future climate, unmanned aircraft and space storms.

Talks run from Jan. 29 through March 5 and happen every Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Raven Landing Center, 1222 Cowles St., Fairbanks.

For more information and a complete schedule visit https://www.gi.alaska.edu/events/science-alaska-lecture-series.

Click here for the Facebook event page.

Download a flyer below with information about the entire series.

Each year at the Annual Geophysical Institute Awards Banquet we recognize select staff members of the Geophysical Institute for their contributions to the Geophysical Institute and the Fairbanks community. We depend on you to put forward nominations for those individuals deserving of recognition.

Nominate a GI staff member for their service and recognition at the 2019 Annual Awards Banquet scheduled for Friday, Feb. 15.

Nominations should be submitted through the 2018 Staff Nomination Form here.

We ask that you please provide a short but detailed summary of why you feel this particular individual is deserving of the specified award. To assist the committee in selecting a winner for each award, we will be limiting your nominations to 4000 characters or less (about one page). The form will have a space for you to input this summary.

Community Service Award Criteria
This award recognizes a staff member who goes above and beyond to contribute to the well-being of the community around them. Their generous efforts are recognized for the work they do for the GI community, the greater Fairbanks area, and/or across the state.

Outstanding Staff Performance Award Criteria
This award recognizes a staff member who has made a substantial contribution to the GI mission by going above and beyond their job duties and/or having provided exceptional contributions to the unit while acting as a positive role model to their peers. This individual would not only be a valuable asset to the GI but would make it a point to share their knowledge and expertise to create a better work environment.

Outstanding Student Performance Award Criteria
This award recognizes a student staff member who has gone above and beyond the expectations of those duties written into an everyday student position. Please note, this individual should not be nominated based on their academic standing. This award is meant to recognize student employees for their professional contributions here at the Geophysical Institute.

If you have questions regarding the nomination process, please contact Valerie Rickards at 474-7282 or vsrickards@alaska.edu.

Start off the new year by meeting some resolutions — eating right and saving money!

The GI's Gee-Wiz Heart Walk Team kicks off this year's fundraising efforts with a Soup & Salad Fundraiser - Thursday, Jan. 24 from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. in the Globe Room, 215 Elvey.

There will be a variety of soups and green salads for only $5 a person.

Grab a friend and join us for lunch!

If you have questions please contact Jami Warrick in GI Operations or Lillian Anderson-Misel in the GI Director's Office.

Get involved! If you'd like to participate by bringing a soup - please sign up here:

Or join the Gee Wiz Heart Walk Team and be a part of the action!

UAF has updated to Banner 9. This has made it more difficult for staff in the GI Human Relations office to locate employees without ID numbers. When sending HR any requests regarding yourself or your employees, please include your University/Student ID number. We really appreciate your assistance with this.

As interdisciplinary, transdisciplinary, and convergent science collaborations become more common when addressing big ideas in Arctic research, scientists require the tools and skills to effectively communicate about their work with various audiences and collaborate across disciplinary boundaries. Through this program, the Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee (IARPC) seeks to:

  • train early career scientists (ECS) with the communication skills needed to engage with various audiences, from non-scientists to researchers from other disciplines, and to collaborate with researchers from fields and sectors other than their own,
  • engage them in the research policy process,
  • facilitate connection with Federal program managers and senior researchers, and
  • give an opportunity to present their work without the expense of traveling to a conference.

IARPC seeks eight ECS to enroll in this, the second cohort of this program. The ECSs will identify a collaboration team of interest, participate in and contribute to IARPC Collaboration’s work, and produce a “lightning talk” about their own research to be delivered as part of the IARPC Public Webinar Series and at a collaboration team meeting.

Application deadline: Sunday, Feb. 3, 2019 at 23:59 EST (4:59 GMT). More info and application at: https://www.iarpccollaborations.org/news/12822

Not wanting to start your car at lunchtime? Come to Mather Library and work on a jigsaw puzzle. We are just starting a new puzzle in our continuing theme of library puzzles. This one is entitled "Ludicrous Library" and is a take on an M. C. Escher drawing.

The GI Public Relations office is recruiting for a public relations student assistant to work 20 hours during the school year and full time in summer. See the attached flyer, and apply to https://bit.ly/2M0h05Z.

Desired skills include writing, journalism, photography and video – science background preferred but not required. It's a great job to enhance your resume if you're interested in a career in any fields looking for good communications skills!

If you have questions, contact Sue Mitchell, sue.mitchell@alaska.edu or 474-5823.

If you use Eduroam, you must change your devices’ eduroam configuration on or after Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2018 to maintain access.

OIT will be updating the systems used for device authentication during the winter closure. This change will affect wired network users in the residence halls and users of the wireless Eduroam network. After the hard closure, all currently connected devices will require your interaction to maintain connectivity. This change will occur Dec. 26-28.

On Dec. 26 visit https://cat.eduroam.org/?idp=2487&profile=4304.

You will be guided through the installation of a new configuration that will enable you to roam and securely connect to the Internet at more than 12,000 sites worldwide by just opening your laptop or mobile device.

What: https://www.eduroam.us/
Where: https://www.eduroam.org/where/
How: https://www.alaska.edu/oit/services/campus-wireless-network/eduroam/

For more information, email Kathleen Boyle at kmboyle@alaska.edu or Jarkko Toivanen at jmtoivanen@alaska.edu, or visit https://alaska.edu/oit/replace-radius.

Please make sure you use the correct GI and UAF logos on all your research posters. You can download the logos at these websites:

Official GI Logo

Official UAF Logos

For assistance with GI and UAF logos, contact Design Services at x7146.

Do you have something you want to advertise?

Do you have something you want to advertise?

If you have something you would like to sell or are looking for, you can advertise in the weekly newsletter for free! We can run your advertisement as long as you would like us to. Just scroll to the bottom of the newsletter and click on "submit an item for the newsletter" or email Sue Mitchell with the details.

If you have something you would like to sell or are looking for, you can advertise in the weekly newsletter for free! We can run your advertisement as long as you would like us to. Just scroll to the bottom of the newsletter and click on "submit an item for the newsletter" or email Sue Mitchell...

Science Event of the Week

Jan 14, 2005

In 2005, the Huygens space probe landed on Titan, Saturn's largest moon. It had been released from the Cassini spacecraft when its orbit around Saturn converged with the path of Titan on Dec. 24, 2004. In the first three photographs received from Huygens on the surface of Titan, scientists saw what resembled drainage channels, a shoreline, flooded regions surrounded by elevated terrain and a plain covered with large boulders, possibly of ice. The probe was named after Christiaan Huygens, the Dutch astronomer who first viewed Titan on March 25, 1655, the first of Saturn's moon to be discovered. Read more about the Huygens probe here.