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The University of Alaska Museum of the North is looking for volunteer docents for its school tour programs this semester. Docents will use the museum’s exhibits and hands-on collection to teach students about science, culture and art. No experience is necessary. Credit is available through UAF.

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Rod Boertje knew it was getting cold when Park Service rangers took the dogs inside. Boertje, then a graduate student in wildlife biology at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, was doing a study on caribou in Denali National Park in the early 1980s. Park rangers, saying it was too cold for the sled dogs that had brought Boertje to his study area, mushed the dogs back to a warm kennel. Boertje stayed behind, watching caribou to see what they did in the winter. He’s one of a few scientists who have done field work in Alaska on the coldest days of winter.

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Neil Davis has died at 84, in his Fairbanks home. The scientist/author/doer was a graduate student and later director at UAF’s Geophysical Institute. In the dynamic early days of the place where people study everything from the center of the Earth to the center of the sun, Davis was there.

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An international exhibit of artwork called “Beauty to the Core” will meet its inspiration in Antarctica this January. University of Alaska Fairbanks glaciologist Erin Pettit and her team of researchers created the exhibit to raise awareness of scientific studies at WAIS Divide, a research site of the National Science Foundation.

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The Western Alaska Interdisciplinary Science Conference has been held every spring since 2008, rotating among the Western Alaska hub communities of Dillingham, Nome, Bethel, Kotzebue and Unalaska. Subject matter at the conferences is organized around local research concerns, not disciplines, which makes for an impressive variety of subject matter.

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