Who works in winter?

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    Out of curiosity. If one had the desire to find an entry level type job for the winter season, what department would they have the best chance of finding work in? What type of workers do they need in the darkness?


    There will probably always be a scapegoat needed for any shenanigans that go on during the cold dark night so pursuing and getting a job as winter station manager would be an almost sure bet and the good news is that you really need no skills or knowledge of anything to get one of these jobs in fact common sense seems to be a detriment to being placed in one of these positions so if you have the ability to react with a jerk of the knee to almost any situation and you will accept very little pay for same you may be qualified. (that was meant mostly as a tongue-in-cheek type thing, but not entirely)

    aside from that, the absolute essential people to be on station during the winter are those who will be needed to open it once the sun comes up – the very core of this are probably equipment operators and weather guessers – someone needs to be able to communicate what the weather conditions are locally and someone needs to create a level surface to land a plane on – since equipment needs maintenance and the weather guy (or gal) needs to be able to broadcast his message, it is also pretty essential to have folks in place who can fix heavy equipment and folks who can maintain communications – whether that communication takes places over iridium, VOIP, email, VHF or HAM. All of these people have an inherent need to eat, so food services people are pretty essential. If any of these essential people should fall ill or victim to an accident, someone needs to be present who can patch them up or administer drugs….oh…electricity and heat are pretty vital to communications, cooking and treatment of the sick and injured so someone who understands the intricacies of converting the reciprocal motion of pistons in an engine into electricity probably needs to be present too. Since the ultimate purpose of all of these things is the pursuit of knowledge through science you might as well conduct some science experiments, and during the winter, at the very least there is a need for people who can speak the lingo to monitor any type of equipment and fix it if need be…so a job as a science tech may get you a spot as a winterover if that’s what you want (I would advise against wintering…does weird things to you).

    historically the program keeps many others around during the winter – supply people get a great deal of work done during the winter – construction people do the same and I’m sure I’ve missed some hard working folks who accomplish greatness in the dark, but with budget cuts and projects being deferred it’s unclear as to whether or not many of these people will be kept on for winter (or summer for that matter)


    Thanks for the info. I have no particular interest in staying for a winter, I was just asking out of curiousity. Read somewhere the winter pop is ike 200 and I was trying to figure out what 200 people do for a winter


    In general, the amount of science drops off during the winter. The people who stay tend to be the people who get the base ready for the next season. During the summer, with over a thousand people here, it is pretty darn hard to close down any building for repairs. Generally, after the summer crowd leaves, it gets a lot easier to do major repair jobs. That said, it also gets harder as you may or may not have the parts needed for repairs and there is no way to get what you need down.
    All the trades will have a winterover staff. Less in lean years, more in years with big construction projects. Most of the major construction takes place in winter. Plumbers, electricians, vehicle repair etc all maintain a winter staffing level. Supply spend a fair part of the winter unloading all the containers from the ship and staffing the warehouses for the trades people, so they have a good staff. The dining room keeps a healthy winter staff as well.

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