Finlator et al. explores cosmic reionization

What created the light that flowed between galaxies when the Universe was only a billion years old? Measuring it is akin to taking the young Universe’s pulse, and working out where it came from is akin to guessing the Universe’s diet. The light could have come from hot, massive stars within young galaxies.  Alternatively, it…
Continue Reading »

Posted in Science Highlight | Tagged | Leave a comment

Astronomy Department Students Excel in 3-Minute Thesis Competition

The NMSU Astronomy Department is no stranger to doing well in NMSU’s annual 3-Minute Thesis competition, and this year was no different. The competition challenges students to compress a research project into a short 3-minute presentation. It tests their ability to concisely and effectively communicate complex ideas to a general audience. This year, astronomy graduate…
Continue Reading »

Posted in Award | Tagged | Leave a comment

Astronomy Students Receive Space Grant Awards

The New Mexico Space Grant Consortium (NMSGC) has awarded a total of $30,000 in research fellowships to three New Mexico State University College of Arts and Sciences students for the 2016 calendar year. Award recipients include Ethan Dederick, Sten Hasselquist and Lauren Kahre, all doctoral candidates in the Department of Astronomy. “Our job here at…
Continue Reading »

Posted in Award | Tagged | Leave a comment

Unconscious Bias

Astronomers know all about bias. We learn to anticipate and correct for biased samples and surveys early in our careers. For instance, when we started finding exoplanets, most of them were Hot Jupiters. Did we conclude that all exoplanets are actually Hot Jupiters? Of course not. In much the same way, individuals have biases, and…
Continue Reading »

Posted in Inclusive Astronomy | Tagged | Leave a comment

Inclusive Astronomy Achievements

Recently, we have been reading over the Nashville Recommendations and are exploring ways we can implement these recommendations in our department.   Department Presentations On March 9, 2015 our group gave a Pizza Lunch presentation to the department describing the status of underrepresented groups in astronomy, and all STEM fields, and detailed some of the issues working against…
Continue Reading »

Posted in Inclusive Astronomy | Tagged | Leave a comment

Confidence

Our group spent several meetings discussing confidence and Katty Kay and Claire Shipman’s article in The Atlantic titled “The Confidence Gap”. You may ask, if I am smart and good at my job, why does my confidence matter? “Confidence is the stuff that turns thoughts into action” Richard Petty, Ohio State University [1] Confidence is…
Continue Reading »

Posted in Inclusive Astronomy | Tagged | Leave a comment

Impostor Syndrome

Many people working in high pressure fields have felt that they were inadequate and undeserving of their success at some point in their career. This feeling is particularly strong among students in STEM fields. In 1985, psychologist Dr. Gail Matthews of the Dominican College in California found that approximately 70% of all people have suffered…
Continue Reading »

Posted in Inclusive Astronomy | Tagged | Leave a comment

Microagressions

The term microaggressions refers to “the everyday verbal, nonverbal, and environmental slights, snubs, or insults, whether intentional or unintentional, which communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative messages to target persons based solely upon their marginalized group membership” (Derald Wing Sue). Taken in isolation they may not seem like a big deal, but over time microaggressions have…
Continue Reading »

Posted in Inclusive Astronomy | Tagged | Leave a comment