A solar eclipse is coming up on Saturday, October 14th! Learn more about eclipses with Dr. Michelle Wooten, Assistant Professor of Astronomy Education at UAB!
For more information, contact Holley at email@example.com or 205-445-1117. See the bottom of the event description for road work and traffic info that may affect your visit.
Meet Dr. Wooten:
(From her UAB faculty page) I remember that one night fondly, when I looked up at the night sky and felt awe. I was 13 and had a growing sense that I wanted the stars to become an intimate part of my life’s endeavors. Thankfully, the local amateur astronomy club welcomed me with open arms. Even though our Southern California skies were bright orange due to light pollution, soon I was helping people of all ages look through telescopes at objects like Saturn and the Moon. My high school physics teacher helped me start an astronomy club. In these places and spaces, I was typically one of few women. Over time I became (and still am) critically reflective of my interests in astronomy and my responsibility in shaping its future.
I came to UAB as an assistant professor of astronomy education in 2021, after teaching astronomy for over ten years in New Zealand, California, Washington D.C., Alaska, Pennsylvania, and Colorado. At UAB, I oversee curriculum development of the astronomy program. Each semester I teach upwards of three lectures and three labs with hundreds of students enrolled – mostly nonscience majors. Sharing astronomical discoveries with them, and helping them see their potential in science, are among my greatest life passions.
I have three major goals in my teaching:
To create experiences that help us explore and build a relationship with the night sky that can inspire wonder for many years to come. Art, story-telling, writing, documenting, and observing all play a role in these experiences.
To create an inclusive environment that values the diversity of learners that come to my classes. I publicly acknowledge and support students in contending with exclusions that have persisted in science and astronomy since their beginnings.
To unravel the incredible advancement of our understanding of the space environment due to sophistication of technology and scientific process. Further, to convey the increasingly dramatic limitations to astronomical discovery due to light pollution, radio interference, and satellite constellations.
Beyond teaching, my scholarship is focused on the protection of the night sky. Such scholarship is important to me because of the affordance of night sky toward humanity’s continued humility, wonder, inspiration, and sense of connectedness. Since the time of my hire at UAB I have collaborated with others across the Southeast, United States, and the globe, to broadly create awareness and action toward the mitigation of light pollution and satellite constellations. I initiated and currently lead the Southeastern United States regional chapter of DarkSky International called Starry Skies South. I also serve on the American Astronomical Society’s Committee for the Protection of Astronomy and Space Environment (COMPASSE) and Dark Sky International’s Technical Committee.
Outside of these activities, I am thrilled to serve as faculty adviser for the Astronomy Club at UAB, planetarium presenter and UAB student-show coordinator with the Samford University Christenberry Planetarium, faculty affiliate of the UAB Institute for Human Rights, and volunteer with Alabama Audubon’s Project Safe Flight. I enjoy long walks and camping across Alabama with my amazing friend network, learning gymnastics with my spouse (my goal is a back-walkover; I’m almost there!), and reading life-changing literature with my mom.
TRAFFIC ALERTS FOR CRESTLINE VILLAGE AND MOUNTAIN BROOK VILLAGE WHICH WILL AFFECT YOUR ABILITY TO GET TO THE LIBRARY AS WELL AS PARKING NEAR THE LIBRARY IN THE NEXT SEVERAL MONTHS:
On or around October 9th, Dan Watkins will be closed. This will last about 10 days. Immediately after, Dan Watkins from the parking garage to Keely Court will open, and they will close Dan Watkins from the parking garage to Euclid. This work should also last about 10 days. Somewhere around the first of October, Dan Watkins will be open again, but Euclid will be closed at the intersection at Dan Watkins. This work will last about 15 days, and then they will proceed toward the triangle. We are uncertain if some part of the triangle intersection will be open.
MOUNTAIN BROOK VILLAGE
On September 18, Montevallo Road will be closed at the intersection by Regions Bank until late-October, early-November. Traffic will be re-routed through Lane Parke.