Kalani High School Students Win Research Time With Maunakea Observatories
March 2, 2018: A couple of weeks after our announcement of Kapolei High School Maunakea Scholars winners, Maunakea Observatories and DOE leadership visited upon Kalani High School, where teachers, students and families gathered in great anticipation of this season’s award recipients.
The 2017-2018 school year has, thus far, been an incredibly busy and exciting season, with a record number of schools and telescope partners joining the Maunakea Scholars program. Kalani High School is a returning participant to the program, with three students awarded time using two Maunakea observatories last year. This year, Maunakea Scholars is recognizing six Kalani students whose inspired research and proposals, developed with guidance by mentors from the University of Hawai‘i Institute for Astronomy, has earned them research time with the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility and Gemini Observatory atop Maunakea, and the Las Cumbres Observatory on Maui.
“As they work with mentors to tackle some of the biggest questions about the universe, our students not only increase their abilities and knowledge, but are able to have their work validated by esteemed members of the scientific community,” said Bryan Silver, Kalani High School teacher. “The hands-on learning and confidence these students experience is invaluable, and the impact the observatories and this program will have on them will last a lifetime.”
The Kalani High School Maunakea Scholars Award winners include:
- Kaitlyn Tsuha and Jenny He – “Measuring Jupiter’s Bands” (Using IRTF)
- Yuyun Lee – “Determining the Composition of the Asteroids in the Solar System” (Using LCO)
- Alyssa Zhang – “Brown Dwarf Spectroscopy” (Using IRTF)
- Kaitlyn Strindberg and Ashley Taylor – “Comparing the Atmospheric Compositions of Triton and Pluto” (Using Gemini)
“We are delighted to once again open our doors to the ambitious and hard-working students of Kalani High School,” said Mary Beth Laychak, program lead for Maunakea Scholars and outreach program manager at the Canada-France-Hawai‘i Telescope. “The Maunakea Scholars program was designed to inspire a new generation of physicists, engineers, chemists, and explorers, and we strive to give Hawai‘i’s students a competitive advantage that will ensure their continued success through college and into careers in science.”