Mariama Dryák-Vallies (she/her) is the Director of the Polar Science Early Career Community Office hosted by CIRES at the University of Colorado Boulder. Mariama grew up on a farm in west-central Wisconsin before heading east to earn her B.A. in physical geography and archaeology at Durham University (UK)—where her passion for studying, researching, and teaching about glaciers, climate change, and the natural environment was born. She went on to complete her M.S. in Earth and Climate Sciences at the University of Maine, studying Antarctic glaciology and ice-ocean interactions. During graduate school she was actively involved in advocating for polar early career scientists as a board member and co-chair of the United States Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (USAPECS), and as a project group member and national committee representative for APECS international. Prior to joining the Outreach and Education team at CIRES she coordinated programming for and taught in informal environmental education spaces at non-profits across North America, centering place-based educational techniques. Mariama is passionate about working towards building accessible Earth and polar sciences spaces for all.