News & Events

Prof. Calzetti Invited as Distinguished Visitor

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Professor Daniela Calzetti has been invited as Distinguished Visitor for the 2014-2015 Academic Year to the Australian Astronomical Observatory in Sydney and to the Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics at the Australian National University in Canberra. She will be spending a few weeks at those two locations over the Spring 2015.

Two Astronomy Majors win College Scholarships for 2014-15 AY

Monday, June 23, 2014

Two astronomy majors, Aaron Dunbrack and Kevin Harrington, are selected to be the recipients of highly selective scholarships given the College of Natural Sciences for the 2014-2015 academic year. Aaron Dunbrack is one of the four winners of the Robert H. and Patricia A. Ruf Scholarship, which is awarded to sophomore or junior students in the College with outstanding academic achievements. Kevin Harrington is the winner of Dr. Arthur and Dr. Helen Poland Scholarship, which is a two year award. Descriptions of these scholarships are found in the College web page on scholarships.

Memorial for UMass Astronomy Department Professor Judy Young

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Judy Young, University of Massachusetts Astronomy Professor and longtime resident of Amherst, passed away in the early morning Friday, May 23, 2014.

Judy was born Sept. 15, 1952, to Bob and Vera Rubin, the latter a noted astronomer whose teachings on black holes inspired Judy to become an astronomer as well. Judy earned a bachelor's degree with honors from Radcliffe/Harvard University in 1974 and a doctorate in physics from the University of Minnesota in 1979.

Judy served as professor of astronomy at UMass from 1993 to 2013. Her work on star formation in galaxies earned international recognition and many awards throughout her distinguished career. She was a tireless support and friend to the many students she mentored, who remember her for her dedication, passion, humor and warmth. She dreamed up and built the UMass Sunwheel, a stone circle whose 8-10 ft. standing stones line up with the rising and setting sun during solstices and equinoxes. Judy led seasonal sunrise and sunset gatherings at the Sunwheel, making the connections between sky and earth real for over 8,000 visitors. Judy enthusiastically shared not only her knowledge and passion for science with those around her, but also her deep love of living.

There will be two memorial services held in her honor:

1) On Wednesday June 4th, at 7 pm, friends and family of Judy Young will gather at the UMass Sunwheel to celebrate Judy's life with songs, silence, and stories, led by Gabrielli LaChiara. This gathering will be held rain or shine, under the open sky. Please come prepared, whether that means bringing a folding chair, an umbrella, or leaving your shoes in the car!

2) On Thursday June 5th, at 10 am, friends and family will gather at the Jewish Community of Amherst for a more traditional Jewish memorial service led by Rabbi Weiner, followed by a social hour and snacks.

Please share information about the two memorial services with anyone who knew Judy.

Kevin Harrington Awarded Field Scholarship

Thursday, May 8, 2014

The William F. Field Alumni Scholars Program was established in 1976 to recognize and honor third-year students for their academic achievements at UMass Amherst. The program was named in honor of William F. Field, the university’s first Dean of Students, for his outstanding support of academic excellence and his personal commitment to bringing out the best in every student. Kevin Harrington, a third year Astronomy major, was awarded the Field Scholarship for 2014.


Astronomy Senior Receives Rising Researcher Award

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Marie Calapa, a senior in the Department of Astronomy, was recently notified that she has been selected to receive the Spring 2013-2014 UMass Amherst Rising Researcher student achievement award. This new award, sponsored by the Vice Chancellors for University Relations and Research Engagement, recognizes exceptional UMass Amherst undergraduate students who excel in research, scholarship, or creative activity. As part of this special recognition, she will receive an engraved award, special recognition in campus publicity, and an opportunity for her, her advisor, and special guests to meet the Chancellor and Mrs. Subbaswamy at a spring reception on April 23rd.

Prof. Giavalisco tapped to be member of ISDT of the TMT

Friday, February 28, 2014

It was recently announced by the TMT Science Advisory Committee that Professor Mauro Giavalisco has been selected to be a member of the "Early universe, galaxy formation and the intergalactic medium" International Science Development Team (ISDT) of the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT).

Prof. Calzetti receives invitation to Institute of Astronomy, UK

Friday, February 28, 2014

Professor Daniela Calzetti has been invited as a Raymond and Beverley Sackler Distinguished Visitor to the Institute of Astronomy, University of Cambridge, UK, for the Fall of 2014. She will be spending two months of her sabbatical year at the Institute of Astronomy.

Prof. Daniel Wang Receives Endowed Visiting Chair Professorship

Monday, November 18, 2013

Professor Daniel Wang was recently appointed as a Yixing (endowed) Visiting Chair Professorship at Nanjing University in China. This appointment lasts for three years. The award is for his international reputation as a distinguished astronomer, and his outstanding contribution to the school of astronomy and space science of the university.

Giant New Telescope Ready

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Giant new telescope ready to attempt imaging black hole at center of galaxy. Article in the UMass Amherst "In The Loop" Weekly 8/22/13.

William Irvine elected to IAU Div F Steering Committee

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Professor Emeritus William M. Irvine has been elected to the Steering Committee of the new IAU Division F, Planetary Systems and Bioastronomy. Commission F "deals with our Solar System, extrasolar planetary systems, and bioastronomy. To this purpose, the Division promotes studies concerning planetary systems, including our own, aimed at the understanding of their formation and evolution, from the point of view of the dynamics and of the physics, as well as of the occurrence of conditions favourable to the development of life in the universe. Division F promotes the dissemination of reliable physical and dynamical data concerning the astronomical objects in the above fields, and oversees the assignment of proper nomenclature and discovery credits, where appropriate."

Some 1740 of the IAU's >10,000 members belong to Division F.

Professor Daniela Calzetti receives award

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Professor Daniela Calzetti has been selected as one of the faculty members to be recognized at the ninth annual UMass Amherst Faculty Convocation. This event, to be held on Friday, October 4 at 11:00 am in Bowker Auditorium, will be a celebration of research and creative activity that has achieved national and/or international recognition in recent years. As an honoree, she will receive a crystal statuette, which will be presented to her during the convocation ceremony.