Dr Polly Bass’ advice to students

Taken from an interview conducted on the Juneau Icefield Research Program Dr Polly Bass, Assistant Professor at Mat-Su College of the University of Alaska, Anchorage:

Mary Gianotti: What advice would you give to young scientists?

Polly Bass: Don’t box yourself in. Be open minded. Design your own skill set based on personal strengths. Change is the only constant in life. Having a background that is diverse and interdisciplinary will give you the ability to have unconventional insight in the areas where disciplines overlap. This is frequently where breakthroughs occur. Do not be afraid to take the difficult route. It will pay off in the long run. Don’t protect yourself by taking easy courses to protect your GPA. Let go of the ‘success ethos’ and other societal baggage and do what you are interested in and passionate about, even if it is not what you are best at, right now. Most importantly, be thankful for the people who care enough to tell you things that you may not want to hear but need to hear; who point out your true potential, which you may not be living up to; and who teach you how you can be a better scientist and person.

This is excellent advice, so although not strictly ‘news’ I am posting it here anyway.

Here is (almost all of) the JIRP 2013 group in Atlin (photo by Jeff Kavanaugh):

JIRP 2013 Group Shot

About lindsey

Environmental scientist. I am glaciologist specialising in glacier-climate interactions to better understand the climate system. The point of this is to understand how glaciated envionments might change in the future - how the glaciers will respond and what the impact on associated water resources and hazard potential will be.
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