Subaru Telescope staff visits local classrooms during Journey through the Universe week

May 20, 2015

The Subaru Telescope is committed to community-wide educational programs. Over the last four years, our staff visited 190 classrooms in Hilo-Waiakea complex in the island of Hawai'i, sharing their enthusiasm for science with 4,500 local students through the Journey through the Universe (hereafter "Journey") program. The Journey initiative is a decade-long successful astronomy outreach event that brings together local students and teachers with astronomers and engineers from Maunakea observatories. The Subaru Telescope has been participating in the Journey program since its early stages.

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Figure 1: Director Nobuo Arimoto and 4th grade students at Ernest Bowen De Silva Elementary. (Credit: NAOJ)

Major component of the Journey program is the week long classroom visits by the observatory staff. This year, eight Subaru staff members — Director Nobuo Arimoto, Sherry Yeh, Anna Ferre Mateu, Saeko Hayashi, Joshua Williams, Olivier Guyon, Russell Kackley, and Yuko Kakazu — visited 26 classrooms, inspiring over 700 students during "Journey Week" from March 1 to 5 in 2015.

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Figure 2: Research fellows Dr. Sherry Yeh and Dr. Anna Ferre Mateu making a scale model of the Solar System using toilet papers at Chiefess Kapiolani Elementary School. (Credit: NAOJ)

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Figure 3: Outreach specialist Dr. Yuko Kakazu and the third graders at Ernest Bowen De Silva Elementary School. (Credit: NAOJ)

On March 1st Journey Family Science Day, 'Imiloa Astronomy Center was packed with enthusiastic people. A total of 2,300 visitors came to 'Imiloa's 9th anniversary celebration and listened to presentations by scientists and engaged in various hands-on activities at the Maunakea observatory booths. Eight staff members from the Subaru Telescope shared their knowledge and passion for astronomy with the visitors.

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Figure 4: At the Subaru booth, young explorers learned how to use small telescopes. (Credit: NAOJ)

Dr. Yuko Kakazu, Subaru Public Outreach Specialist who coordinated the Journey program at the Subaru Telescope, says, "Our staff had so much fun talking to people, especially Hawai'i's youth who are curious about everything! It is our mission to share the joy of astronomy with the local community. The Subaru Telescope is committed and pleased to be part of the community-wide educational and outreach programs.

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