Re: Working in Antarctica


Hi Kasei
This is Kasei from Antarctic Traveler?  You seem to have a keen interest in coming down here. You would be surprised at how many unskilled jobs are available down here. McMurdo is the largest base in Antarctica and is open to US citizens and any one else with a green card (work visa). I didn’t catch what your nationality is , but the chances are that whatever country you live in  will have an antarctic base.
McMurdo is a bit like a small town. They need everyone. The most applied for job down here is probably a GA (general assistant)  It’s the ultimate unskilled labor job in antartca. It’s also the lowest pay, but there are some benefits. For starters you can only be a GA for one year. In that time if you want to come back you need to network, visit work centers, get trained in something and make it known that they are better off hiring you the next year than someone totally unknown. Chances are if  you make a name for  yourself as a hard worker, then everyone will want you back.
The bad side is that it can be a miserable job. You will do the work that no one else wants to do. Shoveling snow, chipping ice, cleaning up messes etc. The good side is that you will do it everywhere. It doesn’t happen every  season or to every GA, but there is a much greater chance for a GA than for me that you will be flown all over antarctica to do your menial task. Chances are I’ll never see the dry valleys, Ice Stream C, Byrd Field  Camp, etc. but if they need help with cleanup or shoveling snow, there will probably be a GA flown in to help. Two years ago the seal researchers needed someone to help catch seals and tag them. There was a GA to help. Granted the rest of the time you’ll be chipping ice off u-barrels, but in the end y ou’ll probably say the experience was great. Since it is unskilled it tends to be young college age kids. Probably the most educated group here. They are usually full of vitality and are a lot of fun to be around.
Other unskilled jobs are Galley attendents, DA’s (dining assistant) janitors and workcenter GA’s, and several admintrative assistant jobs (if you have computer skills).
Let me know what you are doing for a living now and I’ll let you know if there is anything here that comes close.
mike in McMurdo