Recreation jobs in Antarctica

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    I would really like to work in Antarctica someday in recreation. I was just wondering what sort of rec jobs were offered down there and what qualifications you would need. Also, what sort of roles and responsabilities I would have and what things would expected from me. Also any other information about how I could possibly get a job like this since I’ve been looking around and haven’t found much in the way of job oppertunities or contacts.



    Jobs in recreation are hard to come by.  Before I ever came down, I thought that that was where I wanted to work.  I wasn’t able to get a job there, and came down as a GA instead, and was glad I got that job instead.  There are a LOT of people who want to work in rec, and so the comettition is tough.  You might want to look at other jobs for the first year, and then schmoooze your way into the rec dept.
    That said, here’s some info about the recreation jobs:  It’s a busy place.  There are probably 1/2 a dozen recreation events going on any given evening.  There’s a lot of coordinating volunteers (instructors for classes, bands playing gigs, etc), and venues & stuff.  A lot of time when you’re at the event, you don’t have the time to enjoy what’s going on, ’cause you’re taking care of logistics.  For example, instead of sitting back with a beverage and listening to the band play, you’re stuck running the sound board  – and you don’t even have sound experience.  Or, there might be a fun evening activity, but you’re at a different one that you have no interest in, making sure things run smoothly.  You end up missing out on a lot fun things that are going on.  You do get to know everyone when you’re in this position, and that’s a nice thing.
    There are a lot of volunteer recreation people.  If you have a special skill, why not teach a class?  If you’re a musician, why not join a band and do some gigs.  There’s a lot you can do to help out the recreation dept.  Also, there are a lot of non recreation dept sponsored recreation events going on (underground sort of stuff) – someone needs to coordinate that stuff.
    I hope this isn’t to discouraging for you…. I always thought I wanted to work in recreation, but now that I’ve been down here for a few years, I’ve scene that there are other opportunities & options.


    I’ll echo Zondra’s response. You have to be someone oriented to the Rec worker lifestlyle to enjoy it. It would help if you’ve done it before as you will already be used to working when everyone else is having fun.
    There is a rec food and beverage person who stocks the bars as well as helps out with rec events. There is a finance person and several people dedicated to organizing events.
    Best to for alternate jobs if your primary rec job doesn’t happen. Don’t fret if you don’t get the rec job.The nice thing about rec is that if you have a special talent, they are usually able to help you present it to the community. Their help will range from full participation (like if you hosting a live music event) to just posting your activity on the rec bulletin board and newsletters.
    Things you might see are sewing, knitting and quilting groups. any number of classes (Language, Painting, Boating, etc.), clubs ( like ham radio, yachting, political discussions, or rod and reel),
    for the most part there is something going on every night and everyone has their own idea on what people want to see.


    Thanks for your help. I never really considered that I wouldn’t be having as much fun with everyone since I would be working but I’m kinda used to that already. Also since it’s something I really want to do I don’t think it will bother me too much. Right now I’m actually doing a three year program at school called Community Recreation Leadership Training. It basically teaches you how to run events, community centers, rec or adventure companies, athletic centers, gym or pools, teach phys ed or really anything else in recreation. So it’ll help me get over that. Also in high school I did an independent study on Antarctica and went there as well with Students on Ice. I’ve always loved Antarctica and I know that one day I will work down there in rec or some other job. But starting off somewhere else and maybe doing some classes would be ok, just so long as I’m down there. I play the trumpet, speak French and can juggle pretty well so maybe I could do that.


    It sounds like you’re perfectly qualified for the job – it’s just that it’s a highly competative position.
    I usually reccomend people attending the job fair if they want a job down here (April-ish in Denver).  The info is for jobs is at  Actually, I think they’re disbanding that site and replacing it with – – either way, look for the job fair postings.  At the job fair, the line for recreation is always the longest line there, and you wonder if they ever remember your face.  Get in touch with the hiring manager (I’m not sure exactly who that is right now) and make sure they know who you are, why you’re qualified… remind them often.  Or, come down working a different job, and go schmooze in rec, so you can get a job there the 2nd year. 


    shmooz shmooz shmooz, but don’t be a pest. Go back through the last couple of years of posts about getting jobs for more advice. Basically, go to the job fair. The most important step is to get the name of the person you talk to and, most important, get an ok from them to keep in touch and then do it. There will be a relatively good chance that someone will either back out or flunk the physical at the last minute. If they are scrambling to fill the job and you just happen to call to say hi at the same time. Well you get the drift. We’ve had lot’s of people tell us that our advice got them the job. Hope it works for you as well.


    Rec are having a bad year so far. With all the new snap decision rule changes placed without thought there are more people here now that are upset and demoralised than I can ever even recall hearing about for quite some time. I was at burger bar/Karaoke last Wednesday and instead of being packed as usual there was only 63 people there at 9 PM, 12 of those were Kiwis who were meeting there to get together to do something else and half of the others were polies or FNG’s who thought it would be a busy night. I think 5 or 6 people sang for them that night. Karaoke is normally wild and fun with everyone getting into it and the Burger bar makes it far more lively, to see such a small turnout shows how veryupset so many are about how things are going these days, with a 72% turnover this year we are getting to the stage where McDonalds branches have more returnees than RPSC.
    I hope some thought and consideration is used in future or the bleedout of oldtimers shall leave this place with a near new workforce and its the first timers who are far more likely to be injured here on the Ice.
    If you want to aply for Rec just be prepared to work a lot harder this and following years to get people going and active.


    Hey Brendan — interesting comments. What were the snap-decision rule changes? glenn


    As I left, they had just put in place a safety rule that nobody could lift more than 40 pounds without help. Also, No working off of ladders more than 5 feet off the ground without safety harnesses. It was looking like a nightmare when I left because everything is more than 40lbs and there wasn’t enough scaffolding on station to not use ladders. They were sorting it out I think, but I never heard the final dispositions.


    Mike, thats correct indeed, the new rules were enforced without proper planning nor engineering of existing buildings to accomodate the enforcement. We construction workers have fought hard to get resolution on many isues and answers to questions and they are being resolved as best they can but we are told to get the job done in a timely manner but we are faced with having to either shortcut regulations or not get a task done due to the lack of equipment or materials.
    Station store also was changed to stock alcohol only on Wednesday and sell it from doors open at 5.30 until it was gone, this was a problem decision for two reasons, firstly, those with Wednesdays off had the advantage of being in the store line before others were finished work and secondly, the line for the store went from the store door around and all the way down highway 2 causing a fire hazard and safety obstructions. They have improved this somewhat now to stock beers on Wednesday and liquor on Sundays, not perfect as many of us, including many on the LDB project, are working on Sundays and this eliminates tha ability for many to purchase the remaining stocks on station. I shall not be in station on Sunday to see if this makes the situation any safer but I hope the crowds are less and line up around the corner to the galley where they shall not abstruct foot traffic.
    To be fair though, station mangement have tried hard to resolve the troubles with this situation, we were all informed that the problem with a lack of alcohol was a miscalculation made some 2 years ago and not identified in time to stock the ship last year and so we have ran out of certain products early. They hope to have this resolved for next year but distribution of spirits and wine this year has had to be creatively thought up so the store staff are not stocking up daily and risking injury from repetitive stress strains.
    We are hoping to have the problems ironed out here soon but with a smaller returnee rate this year we are spending a lot of time training new people in and also learning ourselves how to manage our tasking with the new rules and what equipment we have to work with.
    Sorry its taken me so long to get back on this issue but we are working 7 days now to get LDB finished and the extra days and hours have cut into the time online. Hope you are both having a great time Mike.


    Hey, lucky
    Sounds like an interesting year, Seems like McM is always running out of something. Lorie and I are starting work at Port Hueneme, helping receive items for the next vessel. We’ll take great care of the spirits for you.
    For the rest that don’t know the process. The supply line to get items to the pole is extremely long. Depts submit orders to the Denver purchasing personnel during May June and maybe July. The orders are researched and purchase requisitions go out to the companies. The companies ship to Port Hueneme, Cal., where they get received and sit until it’s time to load the boat in December. The ship arrives in McM at the end of Jan or early Feb. Any replacements for order errors that are found before October or November, stand a chance of making the ship. Anything ordered later won’t make the ship and will sit in Hueneme for another year until the next ship.
    We are probably the only place in the world that gets one shipment a year.
    For station critical items, (Does beer count?) if there is room on an airplane, they can be airshipped in. The cost is prohibitive and is only supposed to be used for important items.


    Thanks Mike, I knew there was a lag in it but was not sure as to how long. We were told the stock was overloaded a few years ago and a newer budget was approved to help take the storage needs down but then they ran out and the budget was not readjusted in time for this season though they hope that next season shall be better and the following one shall be back to normal. They told us a while ago that the only things flown in are the diet sodas as they have a shelf life of only a few months and cannot sit in the docks all day long.
    I recall an all-hands meeting last year when they said a pound of weight flown down costs around $1.17 compared to shipped at $0.12 for the same pound of equipment, at least we still got our 1,000 copies of polar press clips here though, hahaha.
    I am happy to say that the Halloween party went very well, the troubles here were resolved somewhat and people were in far better mood this past week though many are still wanting a do-over as their costumes are still not here yet and they wanted to show them off, I was rather more mundane this year also thankfully. People are getting used to the new ways but there are still teething problems such as Sunday workers and the long lines but its what they see as best right now. I contacted Jay and he replied saying that they are going to try and have Bushmills again next year and maybe even looking into Tullamore Dew or Jameson whiskeys the following years, who knows but this is my last year so I shall not have to worry about the shortages though me ould heart shall bleed for the needs of those without.
    I may be heading back to the central L.A. area again next year and would love to drop by and say hi, I was only 40 Miles from the port this summer and meant to have a look at all our stuff we are waiting for here, haha.
    All the best from the Ice.


    Thanks again for all your help. I just have a couple more questions now. Firstly, I’m Canadian so is that a problem for getting a job down there? Would I have to receive American citizenship first? Also, I was just curious about what the requirements are for being allowed to work down there in any job? I mean like the physical exams and the health requirements. And my last question: what kind of games or sports do people play down there now?



    Ah, the easy questions.
    Firstly, I am Irish and a green card holder and thats all you need to work here, they are hiring more New Zealanders (Kiwi’s) and they have a different contract which I do not think applies to anyone from elsewere. Citizneship is not needed but, if you have a green card you can only be out of the country for 6 months at a time as any longer will remove your residency meaning if you want to apply for naturization you will have to wait a further 5 years unless you are married to a citizen and then youhave to wait 3 more years before being eligible to become a dual citizen. If you stay here for a year you can then lose your green card completly unless you have filed and been approved by INS through the Continued Residency Agreement which means you are considered as still being in or working for America and so retain your rights.
    I believe the medical and dental work has been covered before but in general you have to have a full medical examination and dental checkup with bitewing and full mouth x-rays taken and sent to RPSC for review. Any pre-existing conditions shall be taken into consideration and you will be told if your are allowed here with them with or without medication, you can get meds shipped in easily though.
    Sports. We have teh dodgeball and football (Soccer) as well as basketball and rugby going on right now, the bowling alley is always a busy place and the bars and a few lounges have pool of fuze ball tables in them, one even has a ping pong table. There are hiking trails and climbs as well as skiing and a pretty well done weight room/ aerobic gym and the big gym where the team sports are played.
    Hope its been of help and let me know if you need any other info.


    Don’t forget  frisbee golf. The climbing is an indoor climbing wall down at the gym. There is also an indoor bouldering cave. Rec sponsers several races through the year. There is a marathon out to the airfields and races to the Discovery Hut and Scott base. There is a race to climb OB hill. Last summer they had a bicycle race as well during the summer after the roads melted. There are lots of yoga and aerobic classes if that counts as a sport.

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