A Little Bit about Me

Observing with computers at the Keck Observatory in Mauna Kea, Hawaii

A Little Bit about Me

Hi Ya’ll! My name is Caprice Phillips and my pronouns are she/her. This summer I am interning as a Night Skies Assistant at Sequoia National Park. I am an Arkansan born and raised in Hot Springs, Arkansas. Hot Springs is home to Hot Springs National Park, a park famous for its geothermal springs and historic bathhouses!

Caprice in front of the historic bathhouses in Hot Springs, Arkansas
Enjoying being a tourist during St. Patrick’s Day in my home town of Hot Springs, Arkansas

When I am not working on research or school work, I like to cook food with friends, read books, or watch Marvel movies.

Recently, I graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with my M.A. in Astronomy. I also have my B.S. in Physics and a minor in Mathematics from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

I am interested in exoplanet (planets around stars other than our Sun) and brown dwarf (nicknamed “failed stars” these objects are not massive enough to be considered stars and are too massive to be considered planets) research. My M.A. thesis project involved the characterization of a young nearby brown dwarf.

This is my second time having the opportunity to intern with the National Park Service through the Mosaics in Science Diversity Internship Program. My internship as a Night Skies Assistant took place at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore (Sleeping Bear) in Empire, MI. At Sleeping Bear, I worked with the night sky ranger to develop astronomy programs for their Inaugural Astronomy Day, but my primary project was to research and photo document their artificial lighting as the park began preparations to apply to become a International Dark Sky Park. I really enjoyed my internship and learned so much about the National Park Service, how the night sky is a natural resource and why we must protect and preserve it, and light pollution. The memories from that Summer will last forever. I had such a good time, I decided to return for a second round!

Astronomy and science communication are passions of mines and I am excited to be able to experience both this Summer in this beautiful park. I am thrilled to begin my work here at Sequoia National Park and I look forward to the many adventures the Summer is sure to have in store!

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