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Reaching Out From The Mountaintop. “A WIYN-WIN Initiative ”. Doug Isbell PAEO Manager. multiplier effect. NOAO Who Are We?. NSF Funded, Founded in 1982 KPNO, CTIO, Gemini PAEO: EO, PO, and Public Information. Work Closely with STScI, JPL, UA, and more . . . Including WIYN.

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reaching out from the mountaintop

Reaching Out From The Mountaintop

“A WIYN-WIN Initiative”

Doug Isbell

PAEO Manager

noao who are we

multiplier effect

NOAOWho Are We?
  • NSF Funded, Founded in 1982
  • KPNO, CTIO, Gemini
  • PAEO: EO, PO, and Public Information
  • Work Closely with STScI, JPL, UA,and more . . . Including WIYN
why do outreach
Why Do Outreach?

Astronomy = Unique Opportunity + Fundamental Responsibility

  • Most basic output is improved knowledge
  • NOT doing the job if you stop short of trying to tell story
why do outreach1
Why Do Outreach?


  • Precarious decrease in visibility vs. spin-off sciences
  • Loss of interest from public and policy makers
  • “Working in a vacuum ” – not much fun and don’t live very long
nsf core strategy 2

NSF invests in activities that integrate research and education, and that develop

reward systems that support teaching, mentoring and outreach.  Effective integration of research and education at all levels infuses learning with the excitement of discovery.  Joining together research and education also assures that the findings and methods of research are quickly and effectively communicated in a broader context and to a larger audience.

NSF Core Strategy #2

Integrating Research & Education

public funding
Public Funding
  • Taxpayers deserve a visible ROI
    • Again, a basic element of daily operations
    • Astronomer performance plans
    • Hope it is respected in university hiring and promotion process
pride excitement
Pride & Excitement
  • Because we want to
  • “ . . . a common picture of reality . . .”
  • Are you in the wrong business?!?
outreach definition
Outreach Definition


K-12, college, grad, teachers, Standards-based, formal classrooms, TLRBSE, Project ASTRO, RET, REU

Public Outreach

Visitor center, public programs, telescope viewing

Public Information

E-mails, letters, phone calls, speaker requests


Print, television, home pages, webcasting . . .


What Have You Done?

  • Educational Outreach & WIYN 3.5 Meter
    • Used by approximately 30 grad students/yr
    • Summer 2001 undergradshelped with Tip/Tilt hardware,guide star software
    • Other undergrad effortslike Bailyn classroom teaching
what have you done
What Have You Done?
  • TLRBSE expanding to 3.5 meter in December (Gallagher & Jacoby), enable search of more distant galaxies
  • Local Tucson H.S. studentintern (observing helpto Mac/PC docs)
wiyn 0 9 meter
WIYN 0.9 Meter
  • Opened March 1960, First major KPNO telescope
  • Sister opened in 1966
wiyn 0 9 meter1
WIYN 0.9 Meter
  • Combined best of both in 1990to clear WIYN space
  • New vents & observer amenities
  • Renowned for Wide Field of View(5x Moon) & other “pretty pictures”
educational outreach wiyn 0 9 meter
Educational Outreach & WIYN 0.9 meter
  • Used for Research Based Science Education (RBSE) since 1997
  • More than 100 novae identified in Local Group
  • Trained nearly 60 teachers
  • Very popular with educators & media
wiyn 0 9 meter the future

TLRBSE 5yrs - $1.8 million

WIYN 0.9 meter & The Future
  • Each teachers mentors 3 others + Distance Learning
  • Educational outreach a fundamental rationale for WIYN acquisition
  • Vibrant place for undergrad“mistakes” = learning
  • Personal favorite of many astronomers
  • “Gotta Wear Shades”
public outreach media
Public Outreach & Media
  • KP Visitor Center exhibit
  • Walking tour – new audio kiosk
  • News & Imagery
  • What is unique about WIYN? What does it do better than anyone else?
    • Best seeing and most modern on Kitt Peak
    • Remote observing capability
    • On-site KPNO infrastructure
  • What is the valued-added for involving WIYN in any outreach effort?
how to pay for new outreach initiatives
How to Pay for New Outreach Initiatives
  • NSF:
    • Astronomy & Astrophysics Postdoctoral Fellowships – includes EO requirement
    • MPS internships for Public Science Education – internships for teachers
    • Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) – offer one position for WIYN-related science and outreach
  • University programs adapted for WIYN
  • Private fundraising
what else could wiyn do
What Else Could WIYN Do?
  • Participate in TLRBSE
  • “Clone” the ASTRO program or send partners (paid) to us
  • Help WIYN become part of KP tours
  • Improve WIYN presence in the KPVC exhibits – like CCD primer
  • Sponsor a “WIYN” night or similar on the mountain
what else could wiyn do1
What Else Could WIYN Do?
  • Articles or research reports in alumni magazines
  • Provide more news & images to us and your news offices – textbooks
  • AAS news & exhibit area
  • Webcasting & improved web presentation
there is much going on and many different ways to reach people
There is much going on and many different ways to reach people

Best Part about astronomy –

fresh “eyes” always coming along


Always more to learn, and always a fresh chance to get inspired to do some new outreach and touch some new minds.