Friday, October 2, 2009

AASWomen Newsletter 10/02/09

AAS Committee on the Status of Women
Issue of October 2, 2009
eds. Joan Schmelz, Caroline Simpson & Michele Montgomery

This week's issues:

1. A Resource For Women in Astronomy from the Columbian Astronomical Society

2. Response to Advice Request: How to be a Good Mentor

3. Female Friendly Physics Departments

4. NASA LCROSS Moon Impact Mission October 9, 2009

5. ALMA Science Center Postdoctoral Fellowship(s)

6. How to Submit, Subscribe, or Unsubscribe to AASWOMEN

7. Access to Past Issues of AASWOMEN

1. A Resource For Women in Astronomy from the Columbian Astronomical Society
From: Maria Carolina Brühl Rojas []

Original Email: Buenas tardes, me llamo María Carolina Brühl Rojas, soy de Bogotá- Colombia, tengo 30 años, soy astrónoma desde hace 12 años de la Asociación de Astrónomos Autodidactas de Colombia "ASASAC" ( soy la única mujer de la asociación).

He trabajado en diferentes entidades como astrónoma, y desde hace 1 mes soy la Directora del Observatorio Astronómico del Colegio Italiano Leonardo da Vinci en Bogotá - Colombia; siendo este suceso un gran logro para mi, ya que soy la primera mujer astrónoma en todo mi País en dirigir un Observatorio Astronómico. Me interesaría mucho contribuir al desempeño de la mujer en el área de la astronomía y por eso les escribo para apoyarlos en todo lo que sea posible ya que, yo también he sentido el rechazo y pocas oportunidades en el área de la astronomía en mi país porque siempre ha sido un área liderada por hombres...pero con amor, esfuerzo y dedicación logré ser lo que ahora soy: Directora de un Observatorio.

Los felicito por su magnífica labor!

Muchas gracias por su atención. En espera de una respuesta...

Maria Carolina Brühl Rojas

English Translation (and additional information):
Good morning, I­ am María Carolina Brühl Rojas,  I am from 
Bogota-Colombia, I am 30 years old,  I am astronomer since 12 years
ago of the Association of Astronomers Self-taught of Colombia"ASASAC"
(I am the only woman of the association...45 men-1 woman) and  member
of RAC (Red de astronomía en Colombia- network of astronomy in
Colombia) too.

I worked in different entities and companies like astronomer, but
since 1 month ago I am the Director of the Astronomical Observatory of
the Italian School Leonardo Da Vinci in Bogota - Colombia; for me,
this event is very significant because I am the first woman astronomer
in all my Country in directing an Astronomical Observatory and I am
very proud for this. In my city, 95% of astronomers are men, so, it
is very difficult work in astronomy for a woman?but with dedication,
love and effort I achieved my be a Director of the
Astronomical Observatory.

I have been very attentive of the chapter "she is an astronomer" of
IYA and I think that the woman need more support and opportunities for
work in science, in this case in astronomy.

Congratulations for AASWomen! your work is very important in the
world! and I like help with us in anything.

I am keen to contribute to the performance of women in the area of
astronomy which is why I am writing to support them in whatever way is
possible. I too have felt the rejection and few opportunities in the
area of astronomy in my country because this field has always been led
by men.

Thank you very much for your attention and I hope your response.

Maria Carolina Brühl Rojas

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2. Response to Advice Request: How to be a Good Mentor
From: Maryam Modjaz []

[In last week's issue of AASWOMEN, we posted an anonymous request for advice on how to me a good mentor. We got several replies, including this one. We would also like to thank Bob Stencel and Margaret Hanson for additional information - Eds.]

For a general website on how to be a good mentor, here is a compilation of resources that was put together based on a similar call/question to group I'm a member of [the very active Earth Science Women's Network (ESWN) which recently got an ADVANCE grant]

Some of them are specific to earth sciences, but others apply to all of the natural sciences, e.g. the one by the national academies: "Adviser, Teacher, Role Model, Friend: On Being a Mentor to Students in Science and Engineering"

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3. Female Friendly Physics Departments
From: WIPHYS September 28, 2009

The Committee on the Status of Women in Physics (CSWP) has collected responses to a series of questions about graduate programs in physics that should be helpful to those interested in assessing the climate for women at various graduate schools. The responses can be found at

All the responses are self-reported by department chairs (or their assignees), and the APS and CSWP assume no responsibility for the accuracy of the information submitted.

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4. NASA LCROSS Moon Impact Mission October 9, 2009
From: Michele M. Montgomery []

Are you looking for current events for your general astronomy course? On October 9, 2009 at 4:30 AM PDT, various organizations across the USA are hosting LCROSS impact events that are open to the public. The LCROSS mission is a search for water on the moon. The LCROSS mission is going to send a rocket crashing into the Moon causing a big impact and creating a crater, throwing tons of debris and potentially water ice and vapor above the lunar surface. This impact will release materials from the lunar surface that will be analyzed for the presence of hydrated minerals which would tell researchers if water is there or not.

If you wish to host a public observing event or want to find information on where to find a hosting site, please see .

For more information on the LCROSS mission, please see .

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5. ALMA Science Center Postdoctoral Fellowship(s)
From: Kartik Sheth []

Applications are invited for one or two Postdoctoral Scholars at the North American ALMA Science Center at NRAO in Charlottesville, Virginia. The successful applicant will work under the supervision of Dr. Kartik Sheth and the S4G (Spitzer Survey of Stellar Structure in Galaxies) team. S4G is designed to be the ultimate legacy survey for the distribution of stellar structure in the nearby universe: .

Using IRAC Channels 1 and 2 over the two year Spitzer warm mission, we will obtain extremely deep observations of the stellar mass distribution for a sample of ~2,300 nearby (d<40Mpc) galaxies (dwarfs, ellipticals, irregular, spirals), thus assembling an unprecedented dataset for studies of structure formation during galaxy evolution.

The successful applicant is expected to become an integral and equal member of the team. S/he will work with the team members to reduce, analyze and verify the data, design and deliver the data products for the community. The ideal candidate will also design and pursue a vigorous, independent science research program primarily using the S4G data. S/he may also envision using and/or obtaining data from new observations or existing surveys (e.g., COSMOS, SDSS) to complement the proposed science. The applicant is strongly encouraged to take advantage of the location and the involvement of the NRAO and University of Virginia's existing and future facilities, particularly ALMA and eVLA. Applicants are encouraged to research the survey, discuss their goals with any of the Co-Is and formulate an ambitious research proposal, which should be submitted as part of the application package.

Candidates should have obtained, by the starting date, a Ph.D. in astronomy, physics or equivalent, in an area relevant to these projects. The appointment is for two years (with the possibility of a renewal for a further year) and could start as early as November 2009.

For further requirements and to apply, please visit our Careers site at

or see .

Please include a cover letter describing your interest in the position, a curriculum vitae, publication list, a brief statement of past research (1-2 pages), and a detailed proposed research statement (3 pages), as described above. Please also have 3 letters of recommendation sent independently to Review of applications will begin November 15th and will continue until the position is filled. NRAO is an Equal Opportunity Employer M/F/D/V.

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6. How to Submit, Subscribe, or Unsubscribe to AASWOMEN

[Please remember to replace "_at_" in the below e-mail addresses.]

To submit to AASWOMEN: send email to All material sent to that address will be posted unless you tell us otherwise (including your email address).

To subscribe or unsubscribe to AASWOMEN go to

and fill out the form.

If you experience any problems, please email

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7. Access to Past Issues of AASWOMEN

Past issues of AASWOMEN are available at

Each annual summary includes an index of topics covered.

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