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  • Hi everyone!

    Hello everybody!

    My name is James, i'm a chef in the states who is extremely interested in working in Antarctica. I've got a ton of reading to do around here and on the continent itself, but can i get some ideas/pointers on the place to go to get my Antarctic occupational search rolling?

    Nice to make everyones aquaintance-


  • #2
    Re: Hi everyone!

    It's too late for summer 2008-09, which has already started, and probably too late for Winter 2009 (though there may yet be a chance). Currently, support positions are provided by Raytheon Polar Services Company, and food service jobs are subcontracted out to NANA. If you are really interested, start talking to the people who might hire you. RPSC is located in Centennial, Colorado (a suburb south of Denver), NANA is officially located in Alaska but most of the personnel are elsewhere.

    If you are looking towards anything after Winter 2009 you should make your contacts with the people who have been to Antarctica over and over again, rather than with the company as such, as Raytheon is coming to the end of a 10 year contract, and the winner of the next 10 year contract has not yet been announced.

    Expect it to take at least 3 months - and probably more - to physically qualify and get all the paperwork completed. In an emergency they can act more quickly, but they don't like to have to.

    Antarctica is quite remote, and I've known men who got off the plane at McMurdo and decided they had to leave on the next plane out. It's not the place to be if you need to have people around you, and because everyone can be in close quarters it's also not the place to be if that will make you irritable. However, there is a reasonable degree of privacy if you want it - just expect to see the same people many times over every day.

    If it still sounds good, go for it. Maybe I'll see you there.


    • #3
      Re: Hi everyone!

      Hi James and welcome

      Alan is the expert around here on recent experience on US bases.

      The basics don't change though, you need to be able to enjoy and put up with others company whether it's your choice or not and also you need to be able to be self-contained and not "needy". You need to be flexible in your job and a team-player rather than an individualist.

      There are two parts to coping with living in Antarctica, one is about how you deal with the physical isolation and the practicalities of a cold environment. The other takes place in your head and deals with the way you cope mentally with isolated group living.

      It's not easy, but I've never met anyone who regretted going, the majority wouldn't have changed it for the world and it imprints itself on your heart and mind like no-where else for the rest of your life.