Physics & Astronomy faculty and students lead a variety of outreach programs for local and national communities. The Department has shared a 40-year history with Lincoln Public Schools beginning with the Saturday Science program, and continues to develop innovative ways to bring science to the general public.
Fifth- and sixth-grade Lincoln Public School students spend two hours in the Department of Physics & Astronomy for four consecutive Saturdays each February. A faculty member gives a presentation on a specific topic, and then students work in small groups, conducting hands-on experiments related to the same concepts.
College and University
Science Educators and Adults
Cosmic Ray Observatory Project
CROP is a teacher enhancement program with scientific links to the Pierre Auger cosmic ray study. Each summer, Professors Greg Snow and Dan Claes host high school teachers and students from around Nebraska to learn about cosmic rays and to develop the detection/GIS systems necessary to install cosmic ray detectors on their high-school rooftops for acquiring data from high-energy cosmic ray showers.
Astronomers host this workshop each fall on UNL’s campus, featuring visiting astronomers and area high school and college instructors of either physics or astronomy. During the summer, high school students also have the opportunity to attend a week-long Astronomy Camp on campus.
Starting in the 1999 season at home football games, Professor Timothy Gay presented a 60-second physics lesson via HuskerVision to a stadium full of 76,000-plus fans. Since ending the segments after the 2001 season, the concept has gone international with the NFL.