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Hartnell College Presents Award to UCSC's Center for Adaptive Optics

June 27th, 2005

An educational partnership between Hartnell College and the Center for Adaptive Optics at the University of California, Santa Cruz, is bringing advanced astronomy courses to Hartnell students and encouraging underrepresented students to pursue degrees in science and engineering.

In a recent ceremony at UCSC, Hartnell President Edward J. Valeau presented the President's Partnership of Excellence Award to Claire Max, director of the UC center.

Hartnell's collaboration with the center is funded by the NASA Curriculum Improvement Partnership Award (CIPA) program. When the NASA-CIPA program evaluated its grant recipients recently, Hartnell was the top performing institution and received a perfect score, Valeau said.

Last summer, center researchers worked with Andy Newton, director of Hartnell's planetarium, to offer a summer short course in astronomy called "The Distant Universe." It was the most advanced astronomy course ever taught at Hartnell, and allowed students to interact directly with researchers. The course will be offered again this summer.

Two students who took the course last summer have been accepted into the center's internship program this summer. This is an impressive achievement, as more than 70 students from across the country applied for the nine internship openings, according to Anne Metevier, postdoctoral researcher at the center.

For more information, call Andy Newton at (831) 755-6803.