Nunavut became Canada’s third territory on April 1, 1999. It is the largest territory and makes up one-fifth of Canada’s land mass. Nunavut is made up of a mainland and many islands in the Arctic Ocean. Baffin Island and Ellesmere Island are two large islands. There are 28 communities. There are some weather stations and military bases. Nunavut’s capital is Iqaluit. The towns are very small and far away from each other. Groceries are very expensive because everything is flown in or brought in by barge. The land and water are frozen most of the year. The Arctic waters are covered with ice floes. The land is covered with sheets of ice, water pools, and rivers. In winter you can’t tell where the land ends and the sea begins. The temperature in Iqaluit in January is -30°C and 15°C in July. In Iqaluit, there are nearly 24 hours of daylight per day in June. In December there are 6 hours of daylight per day. Grise Fiord the northernmost community in Nunavut has 24-hour day daylight for four months.
There are 24 hours a day of darkness for four months in Grise Fiord. The long cold winter begins in September. The ground is usually snow-covered until June. July and August are the summer months. Temperatures reach 12°C on Baffin Island. Springtime is from March to June, with 18 hours a day of sunshine. Temperatures in spring can range from -20 °C to -1 °C. Tourism is one of the biggest industry People come to fish, hike, camp, hunt, to see the wildlife.
Higher education in Nunavut allows residents of this Canadian Arctic territory access to specialized training provided at post-secondary institutions. There are some unique challenges faced by students wishing to pursue advanced training in Nunavut, a vast territory stretching across Arctic Canada from Hudsons Bay to the North Pole. There are no universities in Nunavut, but Nunavut Arctic College offers a smattering of degrees in conjunction with Dalhousie University – Nunavut Nursing Program, University of Saskatchewan – Nunavut Teacher Education, and the former Akitsiraq Law Program, For admissions into Nunavut Arctic college, students are required to meet the specific requirements for their chosen program. Programs are not offered at all campuses of Nunavut Arctic College, so interested students are required to submit an application directly to the campus or community center with the course offering.
International and Out of Province Canadians are required to submit applications before April first of each year. Nunavut Arctic College has entered into training partnerships programs for various community and funding agencies. These programs have aided northern residents in gaining skills needed for enhancing their positions within small business, government, and non-governmental organizations. Customized certificates are created specifically for the needs of the community and the organization with the help of public and private sectors. Nunavut Arctic College is a member of the Alberta Council on Admissions and Transfer (ACAT); therefore, the college has formed formal transfer arrangements with Aurora College in the Northwest Territories and many Alberta institutions. The college has arranged bulk credit transfer for other Canadian universities including McGill University in Quebec, Royal Roads University in British Columbia, Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, and the University of Manitoba in Manitoba. Higher education in Nunavut is in the infancy stage. The Government of Nunavut recognized that higher education is critical for economic and intellectual development.