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The mission of the Jensen Arctic Museum is to inform and educate the people of Oregon and the Pacific Northwest about the environment of the Arctic and the culture of Arctic peoples. The Museum's mission will be realized through collection, preservation, study and exhibition of Arctic artifacts, art, and every-day objects.
The Jensen Arctic Museum, located on the campus of Western Oregon University (WOU) in Monmouth, Oregon was founded in 1985 by Dr. Paul Jensen, professor emeritus of education at WOU, with support of WOU administration. The Jensen is part of the WOU Development Foundation, a 501(c) 3 organization on the campus of WOU.
The Jensen Arctic Museum is committed to lifelong learning, for people of all ages, with a specific focus on the cultures and ecology of the arctic circumpolar region. Currently this region is undergoing dramatic environmental and economic changes affecting ecosystems and traditional life ways of indigenous peoples Understanding that any change in the Arctic impacts all regions of the world, including Monmouth, Oregon, the Jensen functions as a research center for studying the ancient and contemporary arctic cultures and environment as well as an education center for the public.
The Jensen Arctic Museum collection consists of Dr. Jensen's original collection, which belongs to WOU, and the rest of the collection items, which belong to the Friends of the Jensen Arctic Museum. The Jensen receives many donations each year and all new acquisitions are the property of the Friends of the Jensen Arctic Museum. The Jensen collection currently contains approximately 3,700 artifacts and archival materials and approximately 1,000 natural history specimens.
The Jensen Arctic Museum is open year round and hosts more than 4,000 visitors each year. Rotating exhibits are researched, designed and installed by students, volunteers and staff. The Jensen also designs, supports and installs off-site exhibits at the request of WOU departments, local businesses, and Alaskan organizations
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