About Saint Mary's

SMU Science alumna planning volunteer expedition to the Arctic

13 June, 2016

Kitrina Godding
Kitrina Godding

When you travel to the Arctic for a diving expedition, you don’t pack light. 

Next month SMU alumna Kitrina Godding (BSc, 2005) will travel to Iqaluit to take part in a volunteer diving expedition, doing research on ocean change and introducing 12 Inuit teen girls to diving and the work the all-female team does.

Each member of the team, founded by Canadian Geographic’s Susan Eaton, will bring five suitcases containing diving gear and research materials. 

They will research ocean change and the disappearing sea ice in the Arctic, and engage the local communities with educational outreach. Their goal is to “bring the ocean to eye level,” using remotely-operated vehicles, mobile aquariums and snorkel safaris.

Godding, a Dartmouth native, is one of five Canadians and the only Maritimer in the group, which also includes medical professionals, educators, journalists and underwater photographers and videographers.

Her Bachelor of Science in Geology and Geography from Saint Mary's, an advanced diploma in Marine Geomatics from the Centre of Geographics, and her experience as an offshore surveyor working with remotely operated vehicles in the Gulf of Mexico all come together to make her a valuable addition to an impressive team of women. 

Godding’s experience with the guiding movement also inspired her desire to help teens. The expedition team’s goal is to empower the girls to become the next generation of Inuit leaders, able to tackle climate change and societal change in the Arctic. The girls will also take lessons back to their schools and communities.

Titled Katujjiqatigii (Inuktitut for working together, shouldering the burden together, side by side), this trip is just the first for this team, which is working towards a 3000 km relay of the Northwest Passage. 

They say this trip to Iqaluit will let them reach out to 700 people, and the number grows to two million with follow up presentations to schools in Nunavut and across North America.

Godding and the Sedna team are seeking support for this volunteer, hand-on educational program. For more information, visit their GoFundMe campaign page.