Video: Celebrating incredible student research projects

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One of my absolute favorite events every spring is the student research presentations! At WWU we have "Scholar's Week", which includes two days of poster presentations from undergraduates in all departments.

This year TWO of my student collaborators presented excellent summaries of their work. In this episode of the ASTRO VLOG we're celebrating student research, and meeting some of these incredible young academics.

Video: Hiking down memory lane

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I was recently home in Eastern Washington to celebrate Mother's day. Here's a short vlog of taking a hike up a hill and down memory lane. With a BONUS reel-to-reel player, complete with bootleg rock & roll from my uncle.

Vlog: Gaia DR2 was released!! Mind = Blown!

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The big data release from Gaia was a couple weeks ago! This is "Data Release 2", containing over a BILLION stars, with precise distances and motions. Amazing. Ever since then I have been racing to write a new paper, and have ideas for new projects to chase and grants to write! Exciting times!

Here is a short travel vlog from the day Gaia DR2 was released:

36 Hours in Pasadena

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This spring I've had an overwhelming travel schedule: this month I've gone on a trip every week. I normally limit my travel to about 1 trip per month, but this spring has been a confluence of rare opportunities, warm invitations, and long-held plans. One more trip to CA this week coming up, and then after a few weeks break I have a final trip to AZ... and then 2 months of being home!

Besides the TESS launch in FL, I have recently been to CA and AZ to visit astronomy departments and give talks.  Each of these trips has been excellent, I am happy to report... but they are exhausting! You spend all day talking with people for 30-45 minutes, each time trying to find the overlap between each other's research/interests. When you talk with folks you know (such as old friends), you often only get an hour or two to catch up, maybe a meal if you're lucky!

I'm not complaining, I love to travel! These visits are a key part of doing science. You need to talk with people, spread ideas, get info on upcoming projects... This is also yet another reason why academia is not a equitable work environment. You need money to travel, as well as time, family flexibility, health... I am fortunate that my family and job have afforded me this season of jet-setting to finish up my NSF postdoctoral fellowship to help boost my networking & collaborations, and set me (I hope) on the right foot for my upcoming appointment as a Research Scientist at the DIRAC Institute (UW)!

This week's vlog: highlights from my recent visit to Caltech

Not shown (unfortunately) was a fantastic burrito from the food truck on campus, which brought back a million good memories of living in San Diego...
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