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1 Copyright © 2003, Summer Science Program, Inc., all rights reserved

2 What is SSP? Six-week residential program Astronomy-based curriculum Hands-on research project: observe an asteroid and determine its orbit Lectures, field trips, guest speakers, recreation

3 What is SSP? 36 students in each of two campuses:  Socorro, New Mexico (campus of New Mexico Tech)  Ojai, California (campus of a private boarding school)

4 What is SSP? Neither grades nor formal credit Academic and social aspects equally important More like graduate school than high school Residential faculty  2 PhDs  4 teaching assistants (graduate students)

5 Mission Immerse, challenge, and intrigue students Expose them to real science and working scientists Surround them with equally bright and motivated peers

6 Curriculum The Orbit Determination  Three-member observing teams  Select an asteroid  3 or more telescopic observations photographic exposures CCD camera images

7 Curriculum The Orbit Determination  Precisely measure position of asteroid relative to nearby stars  Write program to calculate mathematical description of the orbit  Submit results to Minor Planet Center at Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

8 Curriculum Astronomy Observational technique Celestial mechanics Solar system, stellar, and galactic astronomy Cosmology Computer programming IDL language image processing

9 Curriculum Physics Mechanics Optics Relativity Modern physics Mathematics Spherical trigonometry Differential and integral calculus Vector analysis

10 Curriculum Guest Speakers About two dozen prominent Scientists Educators Business Leaders  Many are SSP alumni  Informal reception following each talk

11 Curriculum Recent guest speakers include: Dr. Leon Lederman, Director Emeritus, FermiLab (Nobel Laureate in physics) Mr. Mitch Kapor (SSP '66), founder of Lotus Development Corp., designer of Lotus 1-2-3 Dr. Maarten Schmidt, Prof. of Astronomy Emeritus, Caltech (discoverer of quasars)

12 SSP Changes Lives

13 SSP Changes Lives Community of scholars  Tackle the research in teams  Cooperation, not competition Active support network  Help and advice on college admissions  Classmates keep in touch long after the program

14 SSP Changes Lives Recent alumni write: “SSP was an absolutely amazing experience. Not only did I learn, study, and observe at a frantic pace, but I also got to enjoy the company of my bright and funny classmates.” –Greg Chanan “I never knew learning could be so challenging or so exciting.” –Melissa Latham

15 SSP Changes Lives Recent alumni write: “SSP pushed me so far beyond the limits of a high school education and experience that I feel as if I do not need another year of high school. SSP is the turning point in my life.” –Evelyn Cheung

16 SSP Changes Lives

17 SSP Changes Lives

18 SSP Changes Lives Summary of benefits  Personal growth in a supportive community  Interaction with working scientists and graduate students  Help students choose a college and field of study  Worldwide network of peers and mentors

19 Socorro Campus Campus of New Mexico Institute of Technology  80 miles south of Albuquerque Field trips to Very Large Array (of radio telescopes), Apache Point Observatory

20 Ojai Campus Campus of Happy Valley School (a private boarding school)  80 miles northwest of Los Angeles Field trips to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab, Mt. Wilson Observatory

21 Admissions Open to current juniors and exceptional sophomores Prerequisites  either physics, chemistry, or biology  math through at least trigonometry

22 Admissions Program fee covers room, board, tuition, supplies (see application for amount) Need-based financial aid No application fee

23 Admissions Application and instructions at Deadlines in February (first round) and March Start your application online today!


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