Thank you for your support!

We want to thank and acknowledge all the donors that helped us in the last 2 years! We appreciate your help in supporting the goals of USAAAO, and we could not have made it without you! Feel free to email us at info@usaaao.org if you have any questions.IMG_5810

2018 donor list:

-Zhigang Bian

-Cymer on behalf of Huiping Zheng

-Kelly Finnerty

-Ann & Jim Robinson

-Dai Cheng

-Qin Huang

-Daniel McCarty

-Baogen Wu

-Nishanth Anand

-Christopher McKenzie

-Hongmei Chen

-number of anonymous donors

2017 donor list:

-Cymer on behalf of Huiping Zheng

– Stacy Seaberg

– Robert S. Scheurer

– Dr Robert & Susan Seaberg

– Shrivathsa Ballal

– Huiping Zheng

– Changzhong Yang

– Kaleeg

– Girish Upadhya

– Meia Chita-Tegmark

– Libby and Salim Jabbour

– Aaron Johnson

– Jamie Titus

– Nirmala Acharya

– Haibo Qian

– Krishna Bhat

– Joseph McCarty

– Steven Finkelstein

– Pavel Shibayev

– Justin Kang

-number of anonymous donors

 

 

 

 

Announcing the 2019 USA Astronomy and Astrophysics Team!

This year, the US will be bringing two teams to the IOAA in Hungary from August 2-10!

Main team:

Joseph McCarty (Lubbock High School, TX)
Vincent Bian (Poolesville High School, MD)
Albert Qin (Mira Loma High School, CA)
Daniel Chang (North Hollywood High School, CA)
Anthony Ou (Carmel High School, IN)

Guest team:

April Cheng (Canyon Crest Academy, CA)
Sean Chen (Canyon Crest Academy, CA)
Dean Zhou (Clear Lake High School, TX)
Devin Hoover (Poolesville High School, MD)
Leo Yao (West Windsor Plainsboro High School North, NJ)

Team Leaders: Ioana Zelko (Harvard University) and Natasa Dragovic (University of Texas at Austin)

Thank you to all the volunteers who helped out with the selection process, and thank you to all the participants this year!

Exams are now posted on our Past Exams page. Feel free to email us at info@usaaao.org if you have any questions. Click here you want to know more about the team!

First Round Complete

We had almost 200 students compete from around 85 schools participate in the first round of the USAAAO! Thanks so much to all the teachers who helped proctor the exam. Results should be out soon for those that have not heard back. You can also find the exam and solutions on our Past Exams page.

Be part of the Astronomy and Astrophysics Team of USA at the International Astronomy and Astrophysics Olympiad!

Please register at this link.

Registration will close on January 25th, 2019.

You can read more about the tests on our selection process page, and you can find study materials on our resource page. If you have any questions, email us at info@usaaao.org!

Joseph McCarty (Lubbock High School, TX)  shared his journey and tips to win a gold medal in Beijing last November.

“I first heard about USAAAO my freshman year right before the registration deadline when a friend of mine saw something about it on a MIT mailing list for prospective students. He was somewhat interested in astronomy but he knew I was very interested so he told me about it and we both took the first round that year. I didn’t prepare for the first round and qualified for the NAO thanks to some prior knowledge and educated guesses, but I got the Fundamental Astronomy book mentioned on the USAAAO resources page from a library as I was preparing for the NAO. Still, there wasn’t a lot of time so I didn’t feel very prepared, but much to my surprise I made the training camp. The training camp motivated me a lot to make the team the following year. After being selected, I began preparing for the Olympiad mostly by doing practice problems and thoroughly understanding any part I missed. While there were a lot of problems I didn’t have time to do, the focused work I did definitely paid off at IOAA, and the training we received from our coaches was also very helpful. IOAA was a very fun experience, particularly meeting many other students from around the world with similar interests and getting to know the other people from the USA. It was also my first time traveling outside the country, so it was quite different from anything I had previously done. For people interested in participating, I would recommend spending time on celestial coordinates. A strong background in coordinates will help not only in a lot of theory problems but also in observation. Also, learn a lot about any topic you find fascinating! For me, there were some subjects which I studied in more depth than I needed to for the competition, but doing that helped maintain my excitement and motivation for the other parts of the competition.”

img_5777

Schedule for USAAAO 2019

We’re excited to announce the schedule for the upcoming USAAAO year!

Dec 1st – Jan 25th: Registration

Jan 26th – Jan 30th: First Round Exam

Mar 2nd – Mar 8th: National Astronomy Olympiad

Aug 2nd – Aug 11th: IOAA

Registration will open in one week on our registration page, so get ready and spread the word! If you want an email announcement, join our mailing list here. The registration fee this year will be $25, however we will accept financial aid requests via email.

You can read more about the tests on our selection process page, and you can find study materials on our resource page. If you have any questions, email us at info@usaaao.org!

 

 

Historical Results for USA Astronomy and Astrophysics Team in the International Olympiad in Astronomy and Astrophysics!

Over three hundred students from thirty-eight countries competed in the 12th International Olympiad in Astronomy and Astrophysics in Beijing, China from November 3rd through 11th. The American team achieved its best result since its first participation seven years ago, with four medals and an honorable mention:

Joseph McCarty (Lubbock High School, TX) — gold medal

Vincent Bian (Poolesville High School, MD) — gold medal and special award for highest score in the theoretical exam

April Cheng (Canyon Crest Academy, CA) — silver medal

Sahil Pontula (Enloe High School, NC) — bronze medal

Andy Zhu (Canyon Crest Academy, CA) — honorable mention

David Yue (Texas Academy of Math and Science, TX) — due to sickness arrived late to the competition.IMG_20181111_113134.jpg

These achievements are all the more remarkable considering that the USA team never met in person before the competition. Training was conducted by volunteer mentors through video calls with the team members. Instruction in theoretical problems was provided by from the team leaders Natasa Dragovic (University of Texas at Austin) and Ioana Zelko (Harvard University). Prof. Blagoy Rangelov (from Texas State University) and local astronomical societies helped students with the observational round. Prof. David Fallest (from North Carolina State University) helped students with data analysis. Sahil Pontula would also like to thank the Raleigh Astronomy Club and Mr. Doug Lively for their support in his endeavors.

The USA team was selected by volunteer members of the USAAAO (USA Astronomy and Astrophysics Olympiad) based on candidates’ results in a selection exam. The next IOAA will take place in Hungary in August 2019. The USAAAO will soon open registration for the 2019 First Round Exam. Anyone  interested in competing, should sign up at https://usaaao.org/registration/.

 

The USAAAO team is entirely self-funded and does not receive any support from the United States government. Donations to the team are welcomed via GoFundMe at https://www.gofundme.com/usa-ioaa2018. We need all the help we can get to send our team to the competition!