3rd place in friendly rowing competition


The new students of the CMM 2014-2015 had a chance to prove their physical and mental will, after they were invited to take part in the local high schools’ rowing competition.

The 7 students were set to row in the first heat against the high school male teachers’ team. Presenting strong muscles and absolute mental fortitude, the student team came from behind to beat the teachers by a mere 1 second!

Overall the student team placed 3rd out of 8 teams.


Photo Credits: Suse Kühn



Thanksgiving Dinner as a start for the new Committee

The new cohort of students has settled in now after being in Isafjordur for a bit more than two month. Some of them agreed on continuing the work of Ægir, the student association, which has been carried out by last year’s students. As a first event a Dinner was offered in the University building. This was done on Monday the 21st of October, inviting all people working for the different companies in the building. Thanksgiving was chosen as a theme and so the approximately 25 guests were offered dishes like chicken, mashed potatoes and apple cake. It was a lovely evening, that gave the opportunity to get to know the new students and also the different companies situated in the building. After the dessert had been served everyone left satisfied and the Ægir members want to say their thanks again to every guest that was there. The next event is already being planned, hopefully seeing a lot of you again as well as some new faces.

Your Ægir Committee

Open House Success

The open house welcomed numerous people who had not been to the previous open house that took place three years ago, or who had hardly set foot in the building at
all. It was Many people were visibly inrtigued when visiting the various organizations. Among those who participated and had displays were the Red Cross, Teiknistofan ehf (a local land- use planning company), the Multicultural Information Center, the Innovation Center of Iceland, and Hafro (the marine research institute). Several of these organizations welcomed people into their offices for casual chatting and snacks. Hafro even had an ‘open ship’ event, where they welcomed people into one of the ships on the harbour  to see the underwater camera view of an innovative scallop harvesting technology they have recently developed and run through initial testing.

The administrators of the University Center of the Westfjords had a display containing information about the various programs offered through the center, and the international students of the Coastal and Marine Management program used their classroom to display examples of the courses that are part of the program and to answer any questions. There was also a display to showcase past and present thesis topics and one to introduce people to the Aegir Student Association, and a bake sale to support the association. Funds from the bake sale and other fundraising activities will support the association’s continued
efforts to organize community events such as this open house, International Buffets, and the weekly cultural exchange nights, as well as weekend trip to Hornstrandir in the summer for the students to be able to celebrate the end of their classes by enjoying the beautiful local wilderness. (rana campbell)

Company Visits #13 & #14- Murr & Melrakkasetur

The students took a trip out to Suðavík to visit Murr of Iceland, Melrakkasetur, the Arctic Fox Center, and the Avalanche Memorial.

Murr is a pet food company established in 2008, and uses Icelandic meat and byproducts to produce both dog and cat food. During our visit, the food bags were in the process of being heated under extreme heat and pressure in order to eliminate any possibility of contamination. Additionally, there were various raw-hides being dried, such as pig ears to produce chewing toys for dogs. The company works under stricht regulations and fulfills requirements of both European Union as well as FDA in the US. Traceability is a key factor and they are able to trace back any product directly to the supplier, and even, the individual animal the product originated from. Thank-you for accommodating us and for the samples shared with those of us who have furry friends back home!

We then visited Melrakkasetur, the Arctic Fox Center. The Center was established in September 2007 but opened in June 2010, and is the only Arctic Fox Research and Exhibition Center in the world. The exhibition focus on the biological and historical aspects of the Arctic Fox in Iceland, including interactions with hunting and farming. Additionally, the Center focuses on research collaboration with institutions and participates in the development of wildlife and eco-tourism in the area. The Center has a cafe and a room upstairs in which they often host fundraiser events. For more information on the Center, please check out their website. Thanks Ester for taking the time to accomodate our group!

Lastly, we visited the Suðavík Avalanche Memorial, which was erected in memory of the 14 residents who lost their lives after a destructive avalanche, January 16, 1995. This event has particular significance of course for the town, but also for the students, who have had the chance to discuss avalanche risk assessment in terms of Environmental Impact Assessments through their course work and research regarding coastal planning and developments. (chelsea boaler)

Company Visits #11 & #12- Longline Baiters & 3X Technology

The Fishing Technology students visited both the longline baiters and 3X Technology.

The baiters are responsible for baiting and re-baiting longlines, where one bucket contains 500 hooks, spaced about one metre apart. It takes the baiters about an hour a bucket, and so they are able to get through quite a lot of line in an eight-hour day! The types of bait being used are saury, squid, sandeel, and mackerel, and are imported, often from Asia. After the lines are baited, they are placed in the freezer, awaiting transport to the boats. Right now, they service one boat, the Kristin-IS, owned by Sjávareldi Ehf, and Saevar is the one responsible for the baiting. In winter months, there are two boats being serviced, with both Gummi and Saevar baiting.

3X Technology is a food-systems equipment and technology producer, based here in Ísafjörður, and was founded by three locals in 1994. The company has grown rapidly, and now services international markets. 3X is responsible for the both the design and production of all their products. They service the aquaculture and fishing processing industries; in fact, all the processing equipment we saw during our Kampi company visit was from 3X! A special thanks to Karl Ásgeirsson for showing us around the entire factory.

Thank-you to our instructor, Einar Hreinsson, for organizing these outings! (chelsea boaler/jennifer smith)

Harlem Shake Video – Ísafjörðurbær

Saturday, the CMM students invited Ísafjörðurbær to join them in their very own Harlem Shake video. Students, residents, children, and pets came dressed in outrageous outfits and danced their hearts out!

A special thanks to Arnar Kristjásson for allowing us to use his boat, all those involved in filming, editing, and documenting, and of course those participating in the video.

Check out the video and photos below. VOTE for our video by clicking “KJÓSA” for the Aegir Student Association video. Enjoy! (chelsea boaler)

Company Visit #10: Jón Vídalín, Vestmannaeyjar

The Fishing Technology students visited the research trawler, Jón Vídalín. The Icelandic Marine Institute, Hafro, completes annual stock surveys for the North-Western part of the island, with a total of 138 various trawl sites, both in- and off-shore. The vessel is leased for two to three weeks completing the surveys, though sometimes weather conditions do not permit for speedy sets.

The catch is released into the hold and down the belts to the processing area. Here, the fish are measured, weighed, and processed. All of the information in the bridge is computerized, and the captain uses equipement such as plotters and radar to monitor the set. The students were also brought down to the engine room, and toured the crew’s living quarters to get a sense of life onboard. Thanks to our instructor, Einar Hreinsson, for showing us around the vessel! (chelsea boaler)

Company Visit #9: Ísafjörður Net Loft

Tuesday March 5, the Fishing Technology students visited the Net Loft here in Ísafjörður. The Net Loft receives net sections from main producers, and then connects the sections based on clients specifications and national regulations. The Net loft produces both seines and trawls. They service three home trawlers all year long, with an additional seven to 10 shrimp trawlers throughout the year, as well as some Danish seine boats. They are also responsible for some of the local aquaculture gear.

The workers were excited to show us around, and demonstrated all kinds of rope-working techniques, such as splicing. Very interesting to see such a historical practice still being carried-out by hand, directly in the fishing community. Thanks very much to Magni Ö. Guðmundsson, and the other workers for allowing us to visit! (chelsea boaler)

International Buffet II- ‘A Night in Paris’ | Alþjóðleg hlaðborð II- ‘Nótt í París’

Our second International Buffet – A Night in Paris was a HIT! The buffet featured foods of France, where the the atmosphere was that of a French bistro one would find walking through the streets of Paris. Thank-you to everyone who came out to support the Ægir Student Association, eat good food, and converse with the students and our guests, and to all the volunteers envolved in making this night possible!

Stay tuned for our third International Buffet, coming up this May. A special thanks to Auður Ósk Aradóttir, owner of Kaffi Ísól, for providing us with the use of her facilities. (chelsea boaler)

Company Visit #8: Hraðfrystihúsið – Gunnvör hf (HG)

The Aquaculture Students visited Hraðfrystihúsið – Gunnvör hf (HG)‘s aquaculture facilities.

HG participates in two main aquaculture projects, outside of their wild fisheries enterprises:
– On growing of captured cod
– Cod farming, from egg to market sized fish

Pens are between 15 and 20 m in diameter, and up to 90 m circumference. Smaller pens contain ~20,000 individuals, where bigger pen hold ~70,000 to 90,000 individuals. When we visited, the average weight of individuals was ~ 800g, where harvesting weight is  just below 3 kg. Challenges associated with this industry includes predation on penned fish by sea birds, most commonly cormorants. Additionally, since cod are bottom feeders, harvesting must be done in such a way as to eliminate or diminish bursting swim-bladders in the fish. This is true for juveniles being transported to the pens, as well as harvesting the marketable fish.

Our visit ended with samples of cod liver, and warm coffee on board one of the vessels. Thank-you to Kristján G. Jóakimsson, director of marketing and processing at HG for the in-class presentation, Barði Ingibjartsson and Eiríkur Ragnarsson for bringing us around the facilities and out to the pens, and to our instructor, Peter Krost, and program director, Dagný Arnarsdóttir, for organizing the outing.