• IPAC

Summer Visit - 2017 - CephC:LABS

The summer visit to Caltech is 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 CephC-LABS team came to visit in June 2017. The core team educators attended, plus 5 students.


  • Real astronomy is looking at data, analyzing data, and drawing conclusions. Real astronomers collaborate with other astronomers to verify their findings. Everything we did on this trip was scientific research; looking at data, analyzing data using different tools, collaboration, and drawing conclusions.
  • [student:] I truly enjoyed working with a determined, like-minded team. It made all the difference for this trip.
  • [student:] The best part of the trip was working with a real research team and helping each other figure things out that we didn't even have the answers to. Another fantastic part was learning so much, so fast. I enjoyed the fast pace because it kept the work interesting.
  • I think it was really important for us to spend a substantial amount of time together, get to know one another, struggle with concepts together, and work toward a common goal. Online hangouts are a decent (and cheaper $ !) substitute, but can’t replace face to face interaction and problem solving. Also, physically being at a college campus or at JPL is a powerful experience for our students. I expected our group to feel more cohesive after the trip and I definitely think we left California as a stronger team.
  • [student:] I was confused a great deal during the process! I honestly think that it is EXTRAORDINARILY hard to NOT get confused/frustrated during this! With the help of my teammates, I did work through it in a timely manner. Honestly, I loved being confused. I knew that finding the answer to the question that plagued me would help farther along. I got more than enough support! I liked being able to ask questions, and, yes, I could definitely still use the support!

Summer Visit - 2017 - CephC:LABS