Bridging the Poles: Education Linked with Research: A Report on the Workshop: 23-25 June 2004, Washington, D.C.
The goals of the "Bridging the Poles" workshop of June 23-25, 2004 were to define strategies to engage the next generation of polar scientists, engineers and leaders, and inspire and educate the general public. The timeframe considered was the next five years, including maximizing the educational impact of the International Polar Year (IPY) in 2007-2009 (see inset below). The ca. 65 participants included K-12 educators, undergraduate professors, Arctic and Antarctic research scientists, Alaskan natives and residents, museum curators, representatives from agencies, the media and international programs. The workshop focused on four major themes: Reaching different levels; Engaging diverse communities; Possibilities for thematic areas; and Programs to feature nationally and internationally. The 22 roundtable discussions on these topics resulted in numerous recommendations to engage both future scientists and the general public. This report synthesizes opportunities for polar education and outreach identified at the workshop, recommends ways to maximize the impact of the IPY, and proposes "Next Steps" to develop polar education and outreach over the next five years.
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