Undergraduate Summer Research: NAC

Here is a recent announcement from the National Astronomy Consortium describing a summer research program for students from underrepresented groups.

The NAC program is led by the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) and Associated Universities Inc., (AUI) in partnership with the National Society of Black Physicists (NSBP), and a number of minority and majority universities to increase the numbers of students from underrepresented and underserved groups and those otherwise overlooked by the traditional academic pipeline into STEM or STEM-related careers.

The National Astronomy Consortium (NAC) is an innovative, competitive program designed to provide research opportunities, and long-term mentoring support, to underrepresented students in STEM fields. The NAC program expands upon the traditional summer research experience by creating an expectation of long-term mentoring, along with engagement in a strong, national-level peer and mentor network. NAC students are selected for grit* and are partnered with world-class scientists, engineers, technicians, and other professionals, for research activities that extend beyond the summer into the academic year. Peer mentoring and support is an important component of the NAC, and is fostered through placement in thoughtfully-developed cohorts at leading observatories and universities.

Highlights of the program include:

·         Summer, and extended, research experience

·         In 2017, NAC sites include NRAO-Charlottesville, NRAO-Socorro, Princeton University, Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI), and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

·         Summer stipend, and travel assistance

·         Long-term mentoring

·         Academic and professional development

·         Year-round, monthly virtual ‘hangouts’ to maintain peer support and continue professional development

·         Weekly cohort meetings during summer

·         Participation in American Astronomical Society winter meeting

·         Participation in annual NAC Workshop at Howard University

·         Opportunities to present research to prominent members of professional societies, universities, and governmental agencies.

For application procedures, see https://science.nrao.edu/opportunities/student-programs/nac.  The application process closes on February 1.

Undergraduate summer research: Cornell University

Logo of Cornell University

Here is a recent announcement of an opportunity for summer research:

The Department of Astronomy of Cornell University is pleased to announce its 2017 Research Experiences for Undergraduates Program http://astro.cornell.edu/specialprograms/reu/.

Students will work on individual research projects with Cornell faculty and research staff on a wide range of topics in planetary science, astronomical instrumentation, astrophysics, general relativity and cosmology. In addition to conducting individual research projects, students will also participate in a series of activities including lectures, roundtables and workshops. Students interested in computer science and engineering are also encouraged to apply.
For each participant, a stipend of $5,000 will be provided for the ten week session, plus up to $1,500 for housing and meals. The program will also provide reasonable support for travel to a professional meeting to present scientific results. Program dates are June 1 to August 9 (but participation may be adjusted for conflict with academic schedules). Undergraduate students who will graduate after January 2018 and who are US citizens or permanent residents may apply. Students must have completed at least one year of undergraduate academic training by June 2017. Eight Research Assistantships will be available.

To view the research projects and to apply, please visit:

Completed applications AND supporting materials must be received by Monday, February 6, 2017.

Cornell University is an equal opportunity employer.

On sabbatical

I will be on a research sabbatical during the spring semester and the first part of summer.  Dr. Barbara Ryden has graciously agreed to act as academic advisor while I am away.  You can contact her at ryden.1@osu.edu.

I will continue to maintain this blog, and soon you will see announcements about research opportunities in our department and elsewhere, along with news from the wider astronomical world.

Have a great semester!