In January 2014, I embarked on a north2north exchange to the University of Tromsø (nowadays UiT The Arctic University of Norway) in Alta, Norway. I learned how to cross-country ski, cook Norwegian food, camp in the frigid outdoors, and learned about the importance of friluftsliv. This term literally translates to “open-air life”, and it taught me the importance of embracing nature and how to enjoy it as a way of life. In August 2015, I embarked on another journey to the Korea Arctic Academy in Busan, South Korea. It was a week-long trip, and I learned so much about the Korean culture and how the Korea Maritime Institute partners with many maritime institutes of their area and others.

Through these two excursions and living in the Arctic, I have come to recognize the importance of renewable energy and the real truth about global warming and its impacts on the Arctic and the Earth. This is very important for me since I am more mindful about my own expenditures on the environment. I am always advocating and educating others any moment that I can about the importance of recycling, energy consumption and just researching about being more “green” all around.

It seems many people of my generation are becoming more accustomed to the changes within the Arctic and the Earth. I believe everybody should play their part in the conservation efforts for lessening the impact of global warming. My hopes for the Arctic collaboration are to continue the ongoing research of climate change and to always be exploring new ideas for renewable energy so we can have a healthy Earth for decades to come.


Originally published in UArctic Shared Voices Magazine 2016 Special Issue: Arctic Council at 20

Read Alexandrias other testimonial here.