Glaciologist - Polar Guide

Silje has completed her PhD in glaciology at the Bjerknes Center for Climate Research, Bergen, with exchange to both Jet Propulsion Lab-NASA, California, and Center for Ice and Climate, Copenhagen. Her research was focused on modelling ice dynamics of Greenland, with focus on subglacial hydrology. During her BSc and MSc she lived 4 years in Svalbard studying marine terminating glaciers and calving. In addition she did a one year study program to become an Arctic Nature Guide and has worked as a snowmobile, cruise and glacier guide in Spitsbergen. Silje is now ready to start a postdoc at the University of Alaska Southeast, shortly after the ski expedition. Her research here will be observing and modelling glacier lake outburst floods.

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Hello Silje!

Where are you right now and where are you originally from? 
I'm in my office in my hometown Bergen; desperate for some easter holiday!

What is your job? 
I'm finishing up the last bit of my PhD in glaciology. I spend most of my time in front of my computer modeling glacier dynamics, but once a year I get to go to the Greenland Ice Sheet for some lovely field work. I will be back on the ice at the end of May, and I can't wait to escape my computer and thesis for an entire month!!!

Can you describe yourself in 3 words? 
Enthusiastic, entertaining and tough

What does “Climate Sentinels” mean for you? 
This project is the light at the end of my PhD tunnel! I really look forward to this expedition, and it represents freedom for me. The closer we get the more excited I get and the more clearly I can picture it.

What are you hoping to achieve with this project?
I hope we can inspire more scientists to be more green and have the environmental impact in mind when planning their next scientific expedition. Also, if we can inspire more young female scientists to stay in science and academia, that would be amazing.

Is there anything that scares/worries you about the expedition? 
eh yes! Sea ice! Going through sea ice is my biggest fear, so I will definitely focus on that in the preparation and during the expedition.

What are you most excited about with this project? 
Just being out there, far away from everything, sampling snow and skiing, slowly and sturdy, one step at the time..