• IPAC
Helen Petach

Dr. Helen Petach

Helen Petach

Fairview High School, Boulder, Colorado

Grades or community reached

11, 12


Dr. Petach was one of the first educators through the NITARP program.




  • August 2011 updates for Dr. Petach August 15, 2011

    Dr. Petach carried out a workshop for two new physics teachers in her region (Niwot High School and Centaurus High School). The astrophysics content is especially useful for International Baccalaureate (IB) Physics programs since Astrophysics is one of the study units. Both Niwot High and Centaurus High are trying to develop IB physics programs.

  • January 2011 updates for Dr. Petach
  • New 2010 Class October 1, 2009

    The 2010 class has been selected!


  • My takeaway lesson is that the students are much more tolerant of "issues" that make the research projects difficult to carry out and are generally content to be involved and learning something new.

  • ... I find that much of the NASA/space policy is unusual relative to other branches of science since the money comes from such a finite collection of sources.

  • The most valuable learning in high school arises when students take ownership of the content. Project such as the analysis of NASA telescope data, provide some optimal examples of this type of learning experience.

View all program quotes

As we feared, the January 2021 American Astronomical Society (AAS) meeting is going to be online-only. The kickoff workshop for NITARP 2021 would have been associated with this meeting. Because travel and face-to-face meetings are such an integral part of the NITARP experience, we have decided to not form new NITARP teams in 2021. We expect to have teams in 2022, assuming the pandemic loosens its grip. Please let us know if you wish to be on the mailing list to be notified when the application is available.