• IPAC

Summer Visit - 2019 - IDYL

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 IDYL team came to visit in July-August 2019. The 4 core team educators attended, plus 5 students.


  • I knew that there would be a lot of work to do going in to this week so I guess that is what was least surprising for me. I have been looking forward to this for a long time and I absolutely loved learning the specific math and physics behind what we are doing in our project. It makes me want to take more classes in astrophysics!
  • I think the best parts of our work sessions were moments in which most people were engaged in meaningful tasks that required them to problem-solve or make meaningful judgements.
  • The best thing about the trip was the ability to work with my NITARP group in person. Yes, it was a lot of work. Yes, the down time was minimal at best but we all learned from each other in a very (very) supportive, yet guided, learning environment. I know that I would not have understood the process or the product as well by working through conference calls.
  • [student:] I know from our discussions that an astronomer has to be creative. They have to think outside of the box to do work that has never been done before. I think they also need to be extremely patient. It takes a long time and a lot of hard [work] to do astronomy research and I constantly found myself impatient to move onto the next thing.
  • The second most important and interesting thing was being able to work with EVERYONE in the group. The collaboration between the members of our team was awesome. It was very nice to be in the same room working together to figure things out. I think our team completed a lot of work this week but it really didn’t seem like work because we all came together as a cohesive group. I [..] do not think we could have accomplished so much in just a few short days with just zoom meetings and email.

Summer Visit - 2019 - IDYL