Extensive educational and outreach efforts are an important part of the center, building on the more than 20 years of experience at PPPL in creating a portfolio of science education programs through Princeton University. The are are four specific educational and outreach programs run by the center.
1. Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU)
At the undergraduate level, the center supports students in the existing Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) at both PPPL and PU, with mentoring by both center post-docs and faculty. A unique aspect of the center is the international partnership with the MPS, and the center also offers undergraduate students summer research fellowships at the IPP in Garching. This provides undergrads with direct experience in international collaborative research programs.
Visit the PPPL website for more information about the REU program.
2. Semester Research Projects
All undergraduate students at PU must complete 2 semester long research projects in their junior year, as well as a year-long senior thesis.
The center supports both junior and seniors at PU who choose a junior project or senior thesis with any of the postdocs or senior personnel associated with the center. This includes the opportunity for international collaboration with scientists at the IPP in Garching.
If you are an undergraduate at Princeton interested in a JP or ST in plasma astrophysics, contact any member of the center (see the People pages) to find out more.
3. K-12 Teacher Development
With the support of the center, PPPL runs a series of professional development workshops for K-12 teachers on plasma astrophysics.
Participants study plasma physics through experimental research in PPPL’s state-of-the-art science education laboratories. Teachers perform experiments investigating the basic properties of plasmas in collaboration with scientists, and develop new plasma-based lesson plans, student-led investigations, and demonstrations.
For more information about this program, see the "Plasma Camp" program at PPPL.
4. Young Women's Conferences (YWC)
Over 2200 young women have participated in PPPL’s Young Women’s Conferences (YWC) since 2002. This annual conference facilitates exposure to career scientists for approximately 250 young women in grades 7 through 10. The YWC includes hands-on exhibits, break-out discussions, and keynote speeches led by female scientists. Exhibitors for the event feature local science and technology companies and research institutions.
With the support of the center, PPPL runs a series of Young Women’s Conferences centered upon plasma astrophysics with the goal of introducing young women to the diverse science and applications of plasma physics.
Visit the PPPL website for more information about the YWC.