Shooting for the stars
Robert Anderson III, a 2018 physics alumnus, graduated Furman University cum laude at the age of 42. He was also part of the Furman Teacher Education program, which, he says, “should be major in and of itself.” Now a teacher at J.L. Mann Academy of Math, Science and Technology in Greenville, South Carolina, Anderson has the privilege of working with a NASA mentor astronomer and other educators courtesy of the NASA/IPAC Teacher Archive Research Program (NITARP) at Caltech’s Infrared Processing and Analysis Center in Pasadena, California.
The program, which recognizes South Carolina for the first time with its selection of Anderson, allows the educator and his students at J.L. Mann to perform undergraduate-level research over the course of a year with professional astronomers. “Specifically, we will be looking for objects known as Young Stellar Objects (YSOs) in the Spider Nebula. YSOs are stars which have not been ‘born’ yet, but are on their way to becoming an official star,” Anderson said. He recently returned from the American Astronomical Society meeting in Hawaii.
Learn more at the IPAC website.