Teaching & Outreach

Teaching 

I enjoy teaching. At Harvard, I was a teaching fellow for two classes: Celestial Navigation (the oldest class at Harvard), and How to Build a Habitable Planet. I won a Certificate of Distinction in Teaching for my work in the latter.

At MIT, I was a teaching assistant for Physics 1 (8.012), Hands-On Astronomy (12.409), and Observational Techniques of Optical Astronomy (12.410). I enjoyed pursuing a hands-on approach to education in these classes.

Astrobites

I am an emeritus writer for Astrobites, an astronomy outreach blog written by graduate students. We aimed to demystify astronomy research and the graduate student experience, aiming particularly at early-career undergraduates. You can find a collection of my articles here

We are working to extend the Astrobites model to other fields. I gave a talk discussing how to do this at the 2013 AGU meeting, which won the Outstanding Student Paper Award in Education. For more information on how to start your own ‘Bites blog, contact me!

ComSciCon

I was a founder and organizing committee member for ComSciCon 2013 and 2014. ComSciCon is a fully-funded workshop run by graduate students, for graduate students. Its aim is to provide training for graduate students in communicating their work. Our 7% acceptance rate demonstrates the demand for such training. In 2013, I organized the “Communicating Science Through Fiction” panel, which explored how to use media such as fiction novels and plays to engage the public with science. In 2014, I co-organized the “Communicating Complexity and Controversy” panel which explored how to meaningfully engage on issues which provoke strong reactions, such as evolution and climate change. 

Public Talks and Articles

I value and enjoy giving public talks and writing articles. For an example see this 2012 Science in the News public talk on astrobiology, delivered as part of a three-part talk on planetary exploration. For a recent interview with Science for the Public regarding my work, see here

Past Outreach Work

At MIT, I founded, organized and taught programs on hands-on astronomy for local high-school students. I also traveled to Catalonia, Spain to teach both academic and hands-on astronomy to local students as part of the Joves i Ciència program