PUNCH Outreach Celebrates First “In-Person” Team Meeting in New Mexico
Our retreat themes included team building, planning, and professional development in both heliophysics and cross-cultural collaboration. PUNCH Outreach partners at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science (NMMNHS in Albuquerque, NM) served as our generous hosts for the first half of our 4.5-day gathering. Following an educational site visit to the Albuquerque-based Indian Pueblo Cultural Center on Day 3, most of the Retreat participants continued onward to Chaco Canyon.
Chaco is a remote World Heritage site and one of the best places on the planet to experience some of the worldwide evidence for ancient Sun-watching. To enhance the personal and cultural relevance of NASA Heliophysics for a broader diversity of people, PUNCH Outreach represents NASA missions like PUNCH and Parker Solar Probe as natural extensions of humanity’s long-lived dedication to observing and understanding the rhythms and mysteries of our Sun.
Three PUNCH scientists contributed their time and expertise to the Outreach retreat. These include PI Craig DeForest, NASA Mission Scientist Nicki Viall, and NASA Program Scientist Lika Guhathakurta. Denise Hill, the Communications & Outreach lead for the NASA Heliophysics Division also participated in our retreat, helping to invent the valuable tagline: Our Extraordinary Ordinary Star.
After the meeting Dr. Viall reported: “There are important things we learned from one another by meeting in person that would have taken a long time (if ever) to understand fully while working remotely. I care a lot about our mission’s outreach efforts, and it was definitely worth it to make this deeper dive with our outreach team.”
The PUNCH outreach team has continued to analyze and learn from the rich collection of feedback and ideas recorded at our Annual Retreat. Our gathering helped us to test prototype products and continue to learn from scientists, Girl Scout STEM leaders, Blind & Low Vision learners, the descendants of Ancestral Puebloan people, and other collaborators how to be of greater benefit to ALL people with our developing suite of multi-sensory, multicultural, and arts-integrated outreach products.
Posted on 2022-11-03