In Whitehorse, the leads attended the “Communities of Change – Building an IPY Legacy” student conference (hosted by UArctic members, Yukon College and ACUNS), where they presented UArctic’s Master’s Studies; Graduate Networks; and UArctic Field School programs, and met with students from around the circumpolar Arctic to hear about their educational needs and interests at the graduate level.

For 2009, the overall goal for the Master’s Studies program has been to produce a final draft of the guidelines and requirements for a UArctic Master’s Endorsement Policy. Thus, after the Whitehorse conference, Pierre-André went to the University of Alaska Fairbanks for a two-week staff exchange visit, where together with Larry, discussed focused on critical aspects of the policy. This lead to a preliminary draft of the policy being drawn up, which is principally based on guidelines approved by UArctic’s Council in 2007 and 2008, feedback from members, and from engaged discussions with members of the Graduate Studies strategic area Leadership Team.

In the coming weeks a final draft of the policy will be concluded and afterwards it will be reviewed by UArctic’s Academic Quality Committee and Indigenous Peoples Issues Committee. Subsequently in early 2010, individual UArctic member institutions (in different circumpolar regions and of different educational systems) will be approached in order to test the policy.

The UArctic’s Master’s Endorsement Policy will then be finalised and presented to Council for their approval at next year’s Council meeting in Yakutsk, with the implementation of the policy to begin by the start of the academic year 2010-2011.

For further program information contact:
Larry Duffy
University of Alaska Fairbanks

Pierre-André Forest
University of Lapland