Bioscience: Science Teacher Milton Johnson and his Team of Five Students Traveled to Texas During Winter Break for The American Astronomical Society

Posted by Communications on 1/18/2017


Science teacher Milton Johnson and his team of five Bioscience students travelled to Texas during the winter break for the American Astronomical Society conference to present the results of their work over the past year in the NASA/IPAC Teacher Research program.  IPAC is Caltech’s Infrared Processing and Analysis Center.  Teaming with Caltech astronomers, high school teachers and students, the teams conducted a year-long research project. The Bioscience team, which included students and teachers from two other schools from Oregon and Los Angeles, presented the results of their study to find newly forming stars (Young Stellar Objects-YSO’s) in a molecular gas cloud about 2100 light years from Earth.  No one had spent much time determining which objects were young stars, but using data archiving with IPAC, they found 245 YSO candidates.  They shared this information with the professional astronomical community via a poster session.    


The Bioscience students were Anthony Aragon; Elizabeth Chiffelle; Cassandra Montufar,  Lis San Emeterio, and Kevin Hernandez.


“Of course, the students were ‘stellar’ in presenting and got loads of compliments from professional astronomers from around the country.  They came home on ‘cloud 9,’ full of confidence for what they had accomplished,” Johnson said.


They plan to independently continue our work this coming year and hope to present at the next American Astronomical Society conference in Washington D.C. (Jan 2018).