During three intensive days before departure, they got an introduction to blog writing, filming, university pedagogics and group work, and while I’m writing these words, they are already putting their what they learnt into practice.
Onboard Statsraad Lemkuhl we now have about 90 students. Their academic background is diverse - back home at their universities they may study accounting, tourism, biology, politics, medicine… - but they all share an interest for sustainability and for the ocean.
Most of them come from Norway and University of Bergen, but thirty or so come from University of South Pacific.
USP is not like any other university; it is run jointly by twelve island states in in the south Pacific (Fiji, Samoa, Tonga, Vanuatu, Papa Guinea +Cook Islands, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue, Solomon Islands, Tokelau and Tuvalu) it has 14 campuses on 13 islands, and they were experts on remote (digital) teaching well before COVID19 forced it on the rest of us.
During the weeks to come, our PhD-group will guide this conglomerate of students through the IPCC report. They will work in small groups, focusing on themes reaching from tipping points and sea level rise to emission scenarios and climate policies.
They will talk, read, write, and talk again – bringing into the discussions their academic knowledge but also their personal experiences and viewpoints. They are all used to reading, writing and discussing. But maybe not to filmmaking?
One of their tasks is to create a short outreach movie related to their IPCC theme. So watch out – maybe the next clip that goes viral on TikTok is from the south pacific?