The Inuit or Inupiat are the native peoples of the Arctic Circle that live from Greenland, throughout Canada to Alaska. Mabel Smith is an Inuit from Barrow, Alaska. On the Healy, she is serving as a community observer. According to the Healy website, community observers are “invited members of local communities who can in some cases fulfill the work of marine mammal observers.” The community observers provide information for their communities about scientific research cruises.
So far, Mabel has seen a few birds, spotted seals and the polar bears. Mabel spends her free time making owls and other crafts. She has also decorated a styrofoam to send down on the rosette for shrinking.