List of Past BANG Seminars : 01-Jan-2016 to 01-Jun-2016


Date:   Thu 28-Jan-2016
Speaker:   n/a
Title:  Winter AAS Recap (and Personal Goals)

For the first seminar of the semester, we'll start by briefly revisiting personal goals from last semester and updating or setting goals for the new semester. Then Stuart Vogel and Katie Jameson will summarize and facilitate a discussion on events at the recent AAS meeting, including the sessions on Inclusive Astronomy recommendations and on harassment, and the Astronomy Allies initiative.


Date:   Thu 04-Feb-2016
Speaker:   Maggie McAdam (UMD)
Title:  Technology and Belonging on Campus: Perspectives from Underrepresented Students

We present a the results from a year long intensive study investigating how students from underrepresented groups experience classroom technology and how technology effects their sense of belonging at UMD. We will specifically be answering the following questions: What is belonging, and why is it important in higher education? Why may sense of belonging be especially important for students from underrepresented groups in higher education? Does accessibility play a role in a students' sense of belonging? How may technology hinder or foster students' sense of belonging?


Date:   Thu 11-Feb-2016
Speaker:   Renee-Michelle Goertzen (APS)
Title:  Periscope: Looking Into Learning in Best Practices in University Physics Classrooms

Periscope provides physics faculty and graduate teaching assistants with the opportunity to "look into learning" in best practices university physics classrooms. Periscope is a set of lessons centered on short video episodes that provide the opportunity to watch and discuss authentic teaching events. Periscope is organized into short lessons that highlight significant questions in the teaching and learning of physics, such as how to help your students work well in groups, or whether it matters if students are happy in your class. This workshop will introduce provide you with the opportunity to discuss issues that arise in the context of authentic teaching events.


Date:   Thu 18-Feb-2016
Speaker:   Ashley Zauderer (Templeton Foundation)
Title:  The Road Not Taken

The standard academic path is not the only possibility. In this seminar, I will share my experiences including a gap year before graduate school, a semester involvement in science policy during graduate school, and participation in an international collaborative fellowship program. While it is commonly understood that a graduate thesis topic defines one's career, I will describe how switching fields and getting broad experiences can be a boon, leading to unexpected scientific contributions. Finally, I will conclude by describing non-governmental sources of funding for research.


Date:   Thu 25-Feb-2016
Speaker:   Kathryne Woodle (APS)
Title:  How to Become Yoda: Strategies for Mentoring

The American Physical Society (APS) has developed programs that help students from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups attain degrees in physics. Strong mentoring relationships are key to their success. I will discuss strategies from the APS Bridge Program and National Mentoring Community to facilitate mentoring relationships and use examples of mentoring from my experience on my journey from particle astrophysicist to non-profit program manager.


Date:   Thu 03-Mar-2016
Speaker:   Brian Morsony (UMD)
Title:  Case Studies in Effective Mentoring

Following on last week's presentation from Kathryne Woodle, we will have structured discussions on being an effective mentor (and mentee). We will discuss case studies from the APS Mentor Training Seminar, with the goal of developing strategies for determining if your mentees understand what they are doing and what is expected of them, and for helping mentees develop the skills and confidence to carry out independent research.


Date:   Thu 10-Mar-2016
Speaker:   Christina Richey (NASA GSFC)
Title:  Proposal Writing Workshop: How to Apply for Federal Tax Dollars

This talk and discussion will focus on an overview of the federal grant submission and selection process and will highlight tips and lessons for writing proposals to NASA's Announcement of Opportunities in Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences(ROSES). While this talk will focus on criteria primarily used in the Planetary Science and Astrophysics Divisions, the advise can be applicable to proposal writing in general, as well as understanding how federal dollars are distributed. This talk will be geared toward early career researchers, but will be useful for all researchers looking to submit proposals.


Date:   Thu 24-Mar-2016
Speaker:   Robyn Smith
Title:   Case Studies in Effective Mentoring (Part II)

Date:   Thu 31-Mar-2016
Speaker:   Gina Quan and Stephen Secules
Title:  Using Student Perspectives to Understand Equity in STEM Education

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education has long been noted for its lack of diversity in gender, race, socioeconomic status, sexuality, and ability. Many diversity initiatives tend to look at aggregate statistical trends to measure and evaluate their progress, but this statistical approach can often ignore critical aspects of diversity. First, treating students like data points and their qualities like variables robs students of their voice and masks significant aspects of their experiences, including the unique ways intersectionality and marginalization play out in daily life. Second, a focus on student qualities can lead to interventions which focus on remediating students, leaving the status quo unquestioned and precluding any institutional and disciplinary critiques or reforms. In this joint talk, Gina Quan and Stephen Secules will explore how these two aspects of diversity research are approached via an equity agenda which prioritizes the student perspective.


Date:   Thu 07-Apr-2016
Speaker:   Catherine Asaro
Title:  A Sense of Wonder: The path from scientist to science fiction writer

Dr. Catherine Asaro will talk about what it is like to be a science fiction writer, how she went from physics professor to novelist, and how she uses science in her writing. A two time winner of the Nebula Award, as well as many other honors, she has written over 26 novels, as well as many shorter works of fiction. When not writing, she is Director of the Chesapeake Math Program.


Date:   Thu 14-Apr-2016
Speaker:   Erin Grand
Title:  Data for Social Good

In this session, I will strive to answer: What is data science, and what skills transfer over from an Astronomy PhD? I will also talk about my work at Crisis Text Line, specifically looking at ways in which data science be used for social good.


Date:   Thu 21-Apr-2016
Speaker:   Mangala Sharma (NSF)
Title:  Astronomy and Science Diplomacy

Astronomy is directly relevant to several aspects of international science diplomacy and is, in turn, impacted by it. This talk provides a peek into UN-level discussions on space policy and spectrum management, through my professional experiences at the State Department and NSF.


Date:   Thu 28-Apr-2016
Speaker:   Shobita Satyapal (GMU/UMD)
Title:  Effective Leadership in Science: The Power of a Quiet Voice

Leadership is often associated with the loudest voice in the room. While this might be effective in some fields and in some situations, it can discourage innovation and scientific questioning, both of which are critical to the advancement of science. In this talk, I will share some personal challenges I have faced on being heard, and effective strategies I have learned to carry out a research career and effectively guide students.

I argue that quiet and thoughtful leadership styles not only have an important place in science, but can be crucial for innovation. This will be an interactive talk focusing on the meaning of leadership in scientific fields, challenges, and strategies to empower the next generation of scientists.


Date:   Thu 05-May-2016
Speaker:   Chandra Turpen (UMD)
Title:   TBA

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