Four Students Awarded Grants

The SARA student grant committee comprised of Kerry Smith, Jim Brown and Bill Lord announces four new grants have been awarded.

Wesley Thomas of Ohio requested an Itty Bitty Telescope (IBT) to be used to demonstrate the principles of radio astronomy to students. Wesley has the support of his science teacher and counselor at school to take the IBT to classrooms not only at his school but surrounding schools as well to show students and talk about radio astronomy. Wesley and his grandfather Dave Thomas attended the SARA conference at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in Green Bank, WV last summer.

Wesley became interested in the IBT and radio astronomy as a result of his grandfather’s involvement and what he learned at the conference. Bill Seymour donated the IBT he had from the Navigator program that was shipped to Wesley. Kerry Smith will be working with Wesley as his mentor on the IBT. We look forward to reports from Wesley on his outreach program to students.

SARA member Jim Moravec works with three schools in Colorado and he had students at each of his three schools write a grant request. The three schools are part of a collaborative team doing applied research and outreach programs in astronomy under Moravec’s guidance.

Wendy West of North High School will be receiving an Itty Bitty Telescope (IBT) and plans to use the IBT in outreach programs at inner-city schools in Denver, CO. She is anxious to do experiments and comparisons between off-site, quiet zones versus in-city data.

Jared Lemons of Smedley Freshman Academy in Arvada, CO requested a Sudden Ionospheric Disturbance (SID) monitor which he hopes to use to compare solar activity with the Radio Jove that went to Michael Christou of the Community College of Denver. The two students along with their classmates hope to take observations and compare these to the NOAA Solar weather data.

The three students in Colorado plan to leave their projects with Moravec so he can continue to teach students about radio astronomy and applied research.