PARKLAND, Fla. – A South Florida teacher is teaming up with NASA scientists in Greenland to collect data on the movement, thickness and depth of the ice, so they can learn more about the climate and rising sea level.
Adeena Teres is planning to use what she learns there and apply it to the classroom at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.
Teres has been a biology teacher at the high school for the last nine years.
She'll be trading the sun for the snow when she makes the 3,000-mile trek from Parkland to Thule Air Base in Greenland.
"I'm super excited. I'm like excited (and) nervous," Teres said.
Teres will spend eight to 10 hours a day flying over the ice, collecting data.
"Basically, the plane is a mobile laboratory," Teres said. "They have radar-sensing equipment, they have radar that they can sense how much ice cover there is (and) they have altimeters so they can figure out how high they are.
"This research is important because it tells you about our Earth, and we need the ice to keep Earth stable."
The PolarTREK program is sponsored in part by NASA.
The 38-year-old teacher applied to the competitive program several times before, but was rejected.
"Even if you don't get it the first time, if you want something, keep on going for it," Teres said. "When you do more, you can get your dreams."
Teres' students fully support their teacher during her quest.
"She has a big passion for science, so it's a good trip for her to go on, I think," ninth-grader Max Wolfman said.
"I'm kind of sad about leaving my classroom for so long, but I know they're going to be fine without me," Teres said of her students.
A substitute teacher is taking over the class until Teres returns. Her trip lasts for three weeks from April to May.
Teres is planning to have her students analyze the data she collected when she returns.