A University of Alaska Fairbanks program that exposes rural high school students to geologic field work has received a significant federal grant.
The program, GeoFORCE Alaska, received a $200,000 grant from the National Science Foundation.
The grant allows for expansion of the recruiting area to now include rural schools in Interior Alaska, in addition to the North Slope and Northwest Arctic Boroughs.
Students starting the 2018 summer academy will spend one week, each consecutive summer over the course of four years, exploring the geology of different geographic regions of Alaska, as well as selected regions in the Lower 48.
With the NSF grant, the program now will have enough funding to start a new group every two years instead of four.
GeoFORCE Alaska Director, Dr. Sarah Fowell discusses why this program is so integral to rural high school students with an interest in science.
"So we are encouraging high school graduation and we also hope to get students into the program early, right after 8th or 9th grade, and encourage them to maintain and even bolster their interest in science. We would love to see them finish high school, but we would also love to see those students go to college and, perhaps, major in a science field."