Our graduate students, past and present, have been distinguished nationally by their commitment and contributions to the greater Astronomy community, including the lay public. ComSciCon and Astrobites are just two examples of efforts that were initiated by and continue to thrive thanks to students at Harvard. In that tradition, the faculty feel it important that every student be asked to contribute in some meaningful way to interact with our numerous stakeholders: outside scientists, students, the lay public, politicians, entrepreneurs and funders, to name a few.
This contribution can take the form of creating outreach products (websites, software, games relating to your PhD thesis) or services (teaching or mentoring in other programs, volunteering in professional societies, organizing events for the public, political activism related to science, etc.). Responsibility for approving and validating such projects rests with the DGS. If you have questions as to whether or not an idea would satisfy the departmental outreach requirement, please consult with the DGS prior to initiating the project.
Students should expect to spend at least 20 hours of effort on their outreach project. They must complete a form detailing their efforts availble here. The forms are due by the end of the Fall in the student's final year.
Examples of public outreach opportunities:
- Academic/peer mentor, or lecturer in the Banneker and/or Latino Initiative summer programs
- Involvement in organizing and running ComSciCon
- Writer and editor for astrobites
- Coach in the International Olympiad of Astronomy
- Explanatory Videos
- Online Interactive Educational Modules
- WorldWide Telescope Tours
- Science Blogs
- K-12 Curriculum
- Public Presentations
Additional examples of deliverable projects