By Laura Parker & Alison Sills, CASCA 2015 Co-chairs
(Cassiopeia – Summer/Été 2015)
On May 24-28, McMaster hosted the 44th Annual General Meeting of CASCA at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Hamilton. The meeting opened with the formal announcement of the William and Caroline Herschel Fellowship. This new funding opportunity for postdoctoral fellows in astronomy at McMaster is made possible thanks to a generous gift from Bill Harris.
The conference was packed with engaging prize, invited and contributed science talks as well as an extended poster session. It was noted by many that the quality of the student talks and posters was incredibly high making the job of judging the student presentation prizes extremely difficult! The Helen Sawyer Hogg Public Lecture, delivered by Roberto Abraham from the University of Toronto, was well attended by an enthusiastic audience of both professional and amateur astronomers.
There were many highlights during the week, but a few things merit specific mention. The education and public outreach session featured a special guest talk by Globe & Mail journalist Ivan Semeniuk on how astronomers can get their science onto the front page of the newspaper. There was also a special mid-term review (MTR) session where panel chair Rob Thacker and representatives from the MTR panel presented their preliminary recommendations. Finally, Canada’s commitment to the TMT project was celebrated at the conference banquet with speeches from many of the important figures involved and complete with TMT mirror-segment cupcakes for all to enjoy. [crowd photo, cake photo, grad student with cupcake photo]
Thanks to all who helped with the smooth running of the conference and to all who joined us in Hamilton last month. We’re looking forward to CASCA 2016 in Winnipeg.