AU Press Releases

Alfred University schedules weeklong astronomy program for high school students

Alfred University will host the Astronomy Institute, a summer program for high school students, from Monday, July 18-Friday, July 23, 2010.

The one-week program is designed for students who will enter grades 10, 11, or 12 this fall. The institute will focus on a number of topics concerning astronomy, such as astronomical basics, variable star photometry, lunar geology, asteroids, solar flares, and black holes.

Classes will be taught at the Stull Observatory, judged to be one of the best teaching observatories in the country. The on-campus facility is equipped with telescopes ranging from eight to 32 inches in diameter as well as electronic detectors and support computers.

In addition to the workshops, participants will enjoy scheduled activities on and off campus, including picnics, campfires, hay rides, and hikes.

Faculty members in the AU Physics Department lead the program. Dr. David Toot, professor of physics, is the institute director.

The fee for the Astronomy Institute is $895, which includes a $100 deposit. This covers tuition, supervision, program materials, a field trip, recreational activities, and room and board from dinner on the first day through lunch on the last day. Participants will stay in double rooms in the University’s residence halls. The $100 deposit must be submitted with the application.

Students who wish to apply must return a completed application form (go to:, a copy of an up-to-date transcript or report card, two letters of recommendation from teachers, a one-page essay which states why the student would like to attend this institute, and a non-refundable (unless the student is not accepted into the program) $100 deposit. All items should be sent in one packet to Office of Summer Programs, Alfred University, Saxon Drive, Alfred, NY 14802, by Friday, April 16, 2010. Late applications may be considered only if space is available.

Full payment of the remaining balance is due by Friday, May 28, 2010.

For more information about the summer Astronomy Institute, visit, or contact Toot at 607.871.2208.