Catching up with Sridhar Anandakrishnan

How did you first become interested in your specialty?

I had just finished my MS in Electrical Engineering and was working on a PhD in EE when I saw a job advertised to go to Antarctica and work on a glacier. I immediately applied and took a year's leave from my studies. When I got back I was so excited about Antarctica that I switched my studies to Geosciences.

What is the most exciting or fascinating part of your job?

The most fascinating part of my job is those times when a new insight sinks in or a new phenomenon is observed and explained—it happens rarely in one's career but when it happens it is exhilarating. There is also plenty of excitement in the work I do in Antarctica and Greenland: traveling to and working in these remote and beautiful places can't be rivaled (and they pay me to do this?!).

What is your favorite aspect of working at Penn State?

My colleagues and students are fantastic. They are having fun and making a difference.

Where do you see your field 10 years from now?

Over the last decade there has been a radical change in the way glaciology and polar research is viewed: it is now seen as vital to understand the glaciers of Antarctica and Greenland better in order to predict what the future holds for sea level changes. I can see that position being strengthened and deepened over the next decade as climate change discussions continue to hold sway with policymakers and the public.

When you're not working, how do you spend your free time?

Taking care of my chickens and playing with my cats!

SIDEBAR

head shot of professor in gray sweater

Last Updated April 06, 2009