• IPAC

AAS - 2020

The Winter American Astronomical Society (AAS) meeting is the largest meeting of professional astronomers in the world. NITARP educators attend an AAS first to meet their team, then they go home and work remotely for much of the year, and then attend an AAS to present their results.  At any given AAS, then, we could have two NITARP classes attending - those finishing up, and those getting started. Reload to see a different set of quotes.

The 2019 and 2020 NITARP teams attended the 2020 January AAS meeting in Honolulu, HI. The 2019 class was presenting results and the 2020 class was starting up. We had alumni raise money to come back as well. We sent about 50 people to the AAS and had a grand time. Please see the special article on NITARP at the AAS. All of the posters we presented are here:

2019 Teams:

NITARP Management:

Returning Alumni Teams:


  • Students learn more from doing and by doing a real research project they learn more than any standardized test could ever hope to measure.
  • [student: The most interesting thing I learned was] The amount of work that astronomers put into research in relation to the small amount of time that they present it.
  • [student:] I think this will change the way I take in information and take notes in the classroom. I know now that even if things go over my head immediately I can come back and understand them better if I put in time and effort. I also realized the importance of taking notes not only on what I am learning but also writing down any questions I have so that I can ask them later and improve my understanding.
  • I was intimidated at the start of this project because I felt like many of the people on my team and people that I saw present at the AAS last year knew more than me. But, after the whole experience is now completed, I have learned that the area of astronomy is so vast that no one is an expert on everything. I learned to appreciate the skills/knowledge that I brought to the team as well as everything that I learned from my teammates.
  • I told my students that I had two big take-aways related to the classroom. The first was the realization that science is never really done. Even though we presented our work, there is still more extension work to be done. Also, I gained experience in learning from failure and authentic use of the scientific method. For example, most labs that we do in my class have pre-determined endings. However, in this experience, we there was not a predetermined ending. We got to make decisions along the way that led to authentic results.

AAS - 2020