"The course was about life within the sea ice with a focus on primary producers, thus, very similar to my research subject, despite the different ice habitat (sea ice versus glacier ice). I applied for the north2north travel grant just some weeks before the course. The costs associated with the participation in a course in the Arctic are usually high, therefore I was very happy of having received the travel grant. The travel grant covered the costs associated with the flights and also with other costs in Nuuk, such as the rent of the apartment.
The course itself lasted two weeks but was accompanied with an additional mandatory safety course for one week. Once, all students arrived in Nuuk we had a whole week of safety training. This training involved first aid, shooting course, GPS and satellite phone training and sea ice safety training. This week was very adventurous (and fun) and prepared us for the safety regulations of being in the Arctic and particularly of working on sea ice.
Once the sea ice ecology course started, we all were very busy and had several lectures and practical lab exercises during one day. We got a general introduction to the Arctic region, the life within the sea ice and also in the methods being used during fieldwork in the Arctic. A particular advantage of the course was that we try out the methods from the lectures ourselves in the laboratory and in the field. The highlight of the course was the one-day fieldtrip to Kapisillit, which is a 2 hrs boat drive. There, we collected sea ice samples ourselves and later on processed these samples in the laboratories of the Greenlandic Institute of Natural Resources. Moreover, we did group work and had to present the results of our field work later on at the end of the course. I even got the chance of giving my own lecture about the subject of my PhD, which was a unique experience for me.
Overall, it was a great experience of spending three weeks in Nuuk in the Arctic, surrounded by such beautiful nature. The course was very helpful for me and I learned a lot, both theoretically and practically.
I am grateful that north2north supported this great experience."