By: Janet Warburton, Education Project Manager, Arctic Research Consortium of the US (ARCUS); and Judy Fahnestock, PolarTREC Project Coordinator, ARCUS

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COVID-19 has had far-reaching impacts, and in April 2020 the decision was made to postpone the deployment of all the 2020 PolarTREC educators to both the Arctic and Antarctica until 2021. Despite the postponed deployments, ARCUS staff have continued working with all the teams with the intent on keeping the cohort engaged, expanding their outreach, and preparing for future deployments. In late March and April, ARCUS staff quickly adapted a face-to-face program orientation to an online version that was delivered over a two-week period. Subsequently, we have hosted a few science talks and we are preparing for additional science and educator virtual presentations in the upcoming months.

In the meantime, we have been highlighting past expeditions on the website and sharing newly created resources from the 2019–2020 program participants. These resources include STEM Experience Reports, photos from the expeditions, videos, and lesson plans that integrate Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), the Polar Literacy Principals, and data related to the expedition research. Access to these resources is free here. The ARCUS team is also posting current events and opportunities on the website, the listserves, and social media platforms.

About the Authors

Janet WarburtonJanet Warburton is a Project Manager for the PolarTREC program at the Arctic Research Consortium of the United States (ARCUS). Ms. Warburton has managed the education programs at ARCUS since 2000 and in that time has helped over 180 teachers on research expeditions to the Arctic and Antarctic. Ms. Warburton has lived and worked across the state of Alaska and now lives in Anchorage, Alaska.

Judy FahnestockJudy Fahnestock joined ARCUS in 2008 and is a Project Coordinator for the PolarTREC program. She holds an MSc in entomology from the University of Maryland, and natural resource degrees from the University of Massachusetts and Paul Smith's College.