Alaska Pacific University (APU) has been accepted as a member of the University of the Arctic (UArctic), the international network of research and educational organizations concerned with issues affecting the Circumpolar North.
The membership approval came during the UArctic Council meeting held in Stockholm, Sweden, Sept. 18-20. More than 130 participants attended, representing member institutions in 14 countries, many located in the North.
“Alaska Pacific University’s membership in the UArctic is a great opportunity to forge stronger academic and research collaborations to help address critical issues Alaska shares with other Arctic communities and countries,” said Dr. Robert Onders, president of APU. “We look forward to bring experiences and issues to the table that will have an impact on our state and the country as an Arctic nation.”
UArctic was created at the direction of the Arctic Council, a global intergovernmental initiative that promotes cooperation and collaboration between Arctic nations and indigenous groups. Two Alaska organizations — APU and the Anchorage Museum — were among 11 new member groups welcomed to UArctic at the Stockholm meeting, bringing the group’s total membership to 212.
Membership in UArctic is part of a growing Arctic focus at APU, grounded in the University’s strategic goals of providing academic programs to meet Alaska’s critical needs and practice applied, community-based research. As climate change alters the global environment and poses challenges in Arctic communities, APU is working to prepare students for careers that will be critical to addressing evolving needs across Alaska and the rest of the Circumpolar North. The University is also partnering with organizations such as Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium and the Anchorage Museum to share knowledge and resources in the interest of understanding and navigating life in the changing Arctic.
“We recognize that the issues that impact Alaska are global issues,” said APU Provost Hilton Hallock. “That is why Alaska Pacific University partners with communities and organizations like UArctic to address the interests of Alaska and the Circumpolar North.”