There are many skills that early career polar researchers require for the basis of a strong career. To help address this, the Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS), together with the ArcticNet Student Association, and the Northern Research Forum held the IPY International Early Career Researcher Symposium, held in Victoria, B.C, Canada from December 4-8, which was sponsored mainly by the IPY Canadian Federal Programme and the Canadian Polar Research Commission. This career development workshop bought together 71 participants and 20 mentors from 14 different countries.
The Symposium brought together early career polar researchers from a range of disciplines for a series of training sessions to develop professional skills, work with senior mentors, and develop international and interdisciplinary collaborations. This Symposium had seven themed sessions, all of which included a plenary talk attended by all symposium participants, and a hands-on training session. All plenary talks and breakout sessions were recorded, and recordings will be available on the APECS website by June (www.apecs.is/workshops/victoria09). In addition, the Symposium organizers hired a conference facilitator, who lead icebreaker activities, and discussed different personality traits and how they affect different peoples perception.
The evaluations from both participants and mentors have been extremely positive, with the vast majority ranking the quality of the breakout sessions as "Good" or "Excellent". Participants of the workshop said that less than 20% of what they learned from the three days together had been taught in their graduate programs and all stated the need for more events like this on an international and interdisciplinary level.
To read a full summary outling the Symposium click here.