2011 Expectations

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                                                                                                           12 February 2011

Science support for Barrow-based NSF researchers is changing in 2011 as primary responsibilities for on-the-ground support shift to UMIAQ, a subsidiary of the Ukpeaġvik Iñupiat Corporation. CH2M Hill Polar Services (CPS) will continue to play a central role in planning science on Alaska’s North Slope. We ask everyone’s patience through this transition, which we will make as straightforward as possible.
While some aspects of support will be different, we want to reassure all field team members that much remains unchanged. Researchers can expect the following to remain consistent:
–          Planning support prior to the field season via CPS staff
–          Airport meet-and-greet pickup service in Barrow
–          The cafeteria and meal card system
–          Lodging reservation procedures
–          Available housing in NSF-leased huts and the NARL Hotel (“Dario’s”)
–          IT infrastructure and support including the differential GPS system
–          BARC facilities and most other laboratory and office spaces
–          Bear guard support
UMIAQ has hired local staff to support scientific activities in Barrow this season and other highly qualified and experienced local residents are assisting in establishing a robust and responsive organization to meet or exceed researchers’ expectations.  Using local knowledge and expertise is a priority for UMIAQ and a key part of our science support model.
The CPS/UMIAQ team remains fully committed to enabling NSF-funded field science projects to succeed in every aspect. Safety will remain central to all activities while every effort will be made to ensure that project goals are met.
We invite you to subscribe to this blog or visit frequently to check for updates about 2011 plans. We also look forward to your feedback via the comments feature of the blog. Your questions and comments will inform future postings here.

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