• IPAC

Summer Visit - 2011 - Period Pontificators team

The summer visit to Caltech is 3-4 days long and is the only time during the year of work when all the participants on the team come together in person to work intensively on the data. Generally, each educator may bring up to two students to the summer visit that are paid for by NITARP, and they may raise funds to bring two more. The teams work at Caltech; the summer visit typically includes a half-day tour of JPL, which is a favorite site for group photos. Reload to see a different set of quotes.

The Period Pontificators came in August 2011. The team's core educators plus 3 students attended.


  • I kept thinking about how much I couldn't wait to share all I was learning with my Astronomy students this coming school year.
  • People all see data differently and get excited about different things. This makes the group stronger.
  • [Real astronomy is] handling huge chunks of data and learning how to mine this information from sets so large that it is simply mind boggling. [...]Many people are not aware of this, notably teachers in the trenches. They are teaching the science not as a process, but as a set of background material that acts as a starting point for conversation. The actual DOING of the science is a foreign thing to most teachers. This project is exactly why we are doing what we are doing! We want to convey what science is...
  • I was delighted to discover several stars that I had no knowledge of, that rotated, pulsated, eclipsed (or a combination of [these]).
  • The 'a-ha' moments at the conclusion of our analyses was unexpected [in that it was so soon].

Summer Visit - 2011 - Period Pontificators team