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Graduation 2020

On May 14, 2020, we used a "webinar" program to join from afar faculty, staff, parents, friends, relatives, and astronomy alumni. We all gathered to celebrate 29 graduating undergraduate astronomy majors and 12 astronomy minors.The list of names follows this text. Four screenshots, along with the text of former astronaut Dr. George "Pinky" Nelson's speech are given in the following five links: ONETWOTHREEFOURFIVE. You can watch the 80 min audio/video HERE (speaker view) or HERE (gallery view). 

Congratulations and good luck to everyone, and special thanks to everyone who made this graduation possible.

If you're interested in going to school in astronomy at UArizona, the presentation also provides a Department-wide perspective of our undergraduate program, including opportunities for research, funding, and inter-Department programming available to our students.


Astronomy Majors-- Samantha Elizabeth Andrews; Marco Antonio Barragan; Cassandra Bodin; Yuxuan Chen; Sean Cunningham; Xingzhong Fan; Farah Fauzi; Colin Alexander Hauch; Yuan Jea Hew; Joseph Robert Hickey; Mackenzie Madisen James; Charlotte Kevis; Michael Klein; Reagen Anne Leimbach; Collin Davis Lewin; Jimmy Lilly; Sammie Mackie; José Angel Pérez Chávez; Chirag Rathi; Daniel Ryan Robinson; William Walker Rockwell; Trevor James Smith; Alejandra Jimena Stephenson; James Jordan Taylor; Justin Tazeah Osiris Ugaitafa; Madison Victoria Walder; Emily Catherine Walla; Ryan T. Webster; Steven Zhou-Wright

Astronomy Minors-- Adam Michael Bauer; Haley Love Collins; Jackson Williams DeStefano; Nicholas Richard Ferrone; Rebeca Christine Gardner; Zackary Kyle Hatfield ;Jacob Reis Heller; Minseong Kang; Evan William Mekenney; Shitij Seth; Sukriti Sinha; Prem Kumar Thirunagari

Aaronson Symposium On Galactic Dynamics With Resolved Stars, postponed to Spring 2022

The first Marc Aaronson science symposium will be held here at the University of Arizona. Because of COVID-19 it has been postponed until Spring 2022.  The conference will be organized around 3 key topics:1)  The secular evolution of galaxies: Physical insights (to be) learned from 6D phase space information of the major baryonic components (bulge, bar and disk) of Local Group galaxies.; 2) The distribution of dark matter in galaxies: Physical insights (to be) learned from 6D phase space of tracers of the dark matter halo of Local Group galaxies (globular clusters, satellites, streams and stars); 3) The nature of dark matter: Physical insights (to be) learned from 6-D phase space information of dark matter dominated systems and systems affected by dark matter.

The Scientific Organizing Committee is: Gurtina Besla (Chair), Dennis Zaritsky (chair), Vasily Belokurov, Kathryn Johnston, Nitya Kallivayalil, Knut Olsen, Hans-Walter Rix, Louis Strigari.

You can learn more HERE and HERE. You can submit an Abstract HERE.

Note that there have been 19 Aaronson Prize Lectures from 1989 to the present, and an Aaronson@30 Symposium in 2017. Our intention is to alternate Aaronson Science Symposia and Aaronson Prize Lectures.

You can learn more about Marc Aaronson HERE

Science News/Links at Steward

Three very recent science articles by/about Steward people. If you have one, send it to edo.

1) ASTROBITES: Samantha Scibelli & Yancy Shirley, "COMs in Cores: Complex Chemistry in Dense Cores in the Taurus Star-Forming Region". LINK HERE.

2) Chris Impey, "the Conversation." "Coronavirus: Social distancing is delaying vital scientific research." LINK HERE.

3) Chris Impey, "the Conversation," How technology can combat the rising tide of fake science." LINK HERE.

The photo is from Adam Block. You can see it and others HERE.

Jinyi Yang Will Be Our Second Strittmatter Fellow

We are pleased to announce that Dr Jinyi Yang, who has been a Postdoctoral Research Associate at Steward since late 2017, is going to become  (Fall 2020) Steward's second Peter A. Strittmatter Fellow, succeeding Dr. Taran Esplin. You can read about the fellowship HERE

Jinyi has kindly provided a brief synopsis of her current scientific projects:

"My main interests include the study of reionization-era quasars, of the history of reionization, and of early super-massive black holes (SMBHs).  I am currently working on a wide-field survey for quasars with redshifts beyond seven, which has yielded the discovery of a new redshift record breaking quasar, and performing the multi-wavelength follow up observations of these distant systems, from X-ray to radio wavelengths. As a Strittmatter Fellow, I will focus on the investigations of the reionization history at the redshift range z~6-7.5 and the SMBHs growth using our newly constructed z>~7 quasar sample, the first large statistical significant quasar sample in the reionization epoch. In addition, I will use ALMA high resolution imaging to directly measure the BH masses of the ultra luminous individuals and study the BH-host interaction in the central region surrounding the maximally accreting black hole. My on-going/future HST and JWST projects will also allow me to give deep insights into the early SMBHs and their host galaxies."    

UArizona COVID-19 Information

Since we now have the big featured article on we thought it would be nice to put up some links to other things here. Because of staffing issues we aren't changing the title of this page.

1)Samantha Scibelli & Yancy Shirley's paper  on Astrobites : "COMs in Cores: Complex Chemistry in Dense Cores in the Taurus Star-Forming Region"

2) Two Chris Impey papers on "The Conversation" HERE and HERE. Titles are "Coronavirus: Social distancing is delaying vital scientific research," and "How technology can combat the rising tide of fake science"

SheTech Event Features High School Student Working With Steward Staff

Ellie Wolcott is a junior in the Engineering Program at Andrada High School  from the Vail School District. She is featured at today’s SheTech Explorer Day at the Steward Observatory booth showing her telescope model. A blow-up of the photo is HERE. Ellie Wolcott, Kelly Merrill, and Kerry Gonzales are left to right.

In her internship, she has learned the SolidWorks design program and created a 3-D model of a 2 meter telescope. The scaled model of her design was 3-D printed and was featured at the Steward Observatory booth as shown below. She is one of the four students in the Steward Observatory High School Internship Program which is collaborating with the Vail School District.

Derek Langley is the Engineering instructor at Andrada High School who has helped to facilitate this and other dynamic experiences for his students and program. The Steward Observatory Staff supporting this effort is Kerry Gonzales, Mario Rascon, Kelly Merrill and Jeff Kingsley.

The City of Tucson Office of Economic Initiatives in partnership with UA Tech Parks Arizona is pleased to launch Arizona’s first SheTech Explorer Day! This day‐long, industry‐led STEM exploration event provides hands‐on, interactive activities in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) for rising 9th through 12th grade girls.