• IPAC

Summer Visit - 2013 - C-CWEL

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 "C-CWEL" team came to visit in August 2013. The core team educators attended, plus 11 students.


  • [student: This experience] made me realize that the astronomy shows I love to watch are way, way, way simplified. Real astronomy requires a deeper understanding of math and many other sciences as well as a ton of persistence. It also made me realize that most astronomers don't spend all of their nights looking through a telescope. A lot of astronomers receive data from a telescope and then spend months analyzing that data.
  • For students, I think they need to understand that the project is ultimately ad investigation into something brand new – there is not right or wrong, clear end point, or place to check your work. They also need to remember that this is real research – not a basic lab or pull out session – there is real work that lasts longer than 55 min at a stretch and takes dedicated brain effort. Also not to be upset if wrong from time to time – it is all part of the process and a great learning opportunity.
  • [student:] We used excel more, and for more, than I thought.
  • This week at Caltech was the greatest opportunity of my career. It was an experience that was humbling and at the same time gave me confidence. I cannot thank the NITARP program enough for the professional development, the professional relationships I've grown, and the inspiration. Thank you NITARP! Please keep this educational program going.
  • I plan on continuing to share the project at [my institution[ in several forms. I will be able to explain how scientists get information from astronomical images and how we look at our data to determine we are discovering YSOs. I will share these processes with students in workshops, with public audiences and with colleagues.

Summer Visit - 2013 - C-CWEL