Graduate student and astronomy writer

Public Speaking

The (almost) complete list of my  speaking experience is now online on my Curriculum Vitae.

I am currently located in Central PA and I am always excited to speak at local astronomy events both big and small. If you would like me to speak at your event, please feel free to contact me.

Upcoming appearances:

Belmont Astronomical Society

I’m speaking live via webcast at this Thursday’s meeting of the Belmont Astronomical Society at Caravan Coffee in downtown Belmont, NC. I’m talking all about the hunt for exoplanets and the exciting (and surprising) things that have been discovered. The talk starts at 7pm…check it out!

Regular appearances:

Universe Today’s Weekly Space Hangout

I am a regular panelist on Universe Today‘s Weekly Space Hangout. I typically talk about exciting planetary or exoplanetary news of the week. The hangouts air live every Friday afternoon at 3pm ET (12pm PT), and usually involve a guest speaker, space news presented by panelists, and an interactive Q&A with the live viewers. It’s always a blast, so go check it out!

Here is the YouTube Channel with all of the archived Space Hangouts. I will soon have a short portfolio with clips from the show.

98.7 The FREQ Radio Station

WFREQ Picturehen something groundbreaking, exciting, or just downright cool happens in astronomy, I email radio DJ Jason Crane at 98.7 The FREQ to talk about it on air. It’s always a pleasure to share exciting astronomy news with Jason (an astronomy enthusiast himself) and all of the FREQ listeners.




The Morning Mixtape: The Discovery of Proxima b, August 19, 2016

Have a listen to my segment about the discovery of the habitable zone Earth-mass planet, Proxima b. This planet orbits the closest star to the Sun (Proxima Centauri), and will likely be the closest exoplanet ever discovered.

The Morning Mixtape: An Uncrewed Mission To Alpha Centauri, April 29, 2016

The announcement of the Breakthrough Starshot program to Alpha Centauri was certainly an exciting development, and I talk about it on air with Jason Crane.

The Morning Mixtape: Finding Planets With Penn State’s NEID, April 7, 2016

I talk about a very exciting development at Penn State Astronomy. A team from our department was chosen by NASA to design and build a $10 million planet finding instrument. Such an exciting opportunity for Penn State Astronomy!

The Morning Mixtape: Extrasolar Planets, November 16, 2015

Yesterday morning I had the pleasure of speaking with Jason Crane at the radio station 98.7 the FREQ about extrasolar planets, alien megastructures, and women in science. I also learned a valuable lesson about always being prepared for basic astronomy questions! The recording of my interview is about 10 minutes long.

Note: I realized right after the taping that I messed up two numbers when I was talking about exoplanets. Firstly, the Sun is about ten times larger than Jupiter, not 100. Also, the “Weird Star” I spoke about in reference to alien megastructures is really about 400 parsecs away, which is about 1400 light-years.  Oops! Sorry for the mistakes everyone.

Buffalo Astronomical Association, April 16, 2016

baapicI had a fantastic time speaking at the Buffalo Astronomical Association’s Annual Banquet in April! I spoke about the development of the exoplanet field, where it’s going, and how the public can get involved in a talk entitled “Exoplanets, the Future, and You,” and I was thrilled at the the engagement and interest level of the audience. Thanks again, BAA, for the invitation to speak with all of you, and for the incredibly warm reception.


Clips from my talk will be uploaded in the near future.

New Jersey Astronomical Association Space & Astronomy Day, Nov. 14, 2015

This past weekend in New Jersey was fantastic! My talk, “Turn left at Dark Matter,” focused on the so-called “sharp turns” in the history of astronomy. These are the discoveries and theories that radically shifted our understanding of the laws of physics and our place in the Universe. See the flyer here!

Edit: Many thanks to Morgan Rehnberg for taking a video recording of my talk. For those of you who were unable to travel to NJ for the event, you can now watch my talk online!

Check out some of these pictures from the event:


From the left: Nancy Graziano (Producer of Universe Today’s “Weekly Space Hangout”), Me, Morgan Rehnberg (fellow speaker, University of Colorado at Boulder (also a regular WSH panelist)), Paul Cirillo (NJAA)


Display case of the history of human spaceflight


The participants of Space and Astronomy Day later in the evening at the observatory.

black forest

I had a great time speaking at the Black Forest Star Party in September 2015, sharing the stage with great amateurs and professionals alike. My talk was entitled “A Short History of Nearly Everything…Exoplanets!”

central pa obs

I will be presenting at the Central PA Observers Astronomy Club meeting on February 5th, 2015 at 7pm at the South Hills School of Business and Technology. I will be talking about the recent advances in detection and characterizations of extra-solar planets. Come check it out!




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