Happening in December
As December nears, many are gearing up for the end of the year and everything it brings – the end of the fall semester, the holidays and winter break. If you find yourself needing a diversion from shopping, cooking and wrapping, UA events provide many opportunities next month.
Two events offer the chance to take part in a major milestone for the UA-led OSIRIS-REx mission, which is sending a spacecraft to collect a sample from the asteroid Bennu. Get a glimpse into other UA research endeavors at the five Science Cafés happening in December. Give to children in need by donating to a charity drive led in part by the UA Police Department. Faculty can learn how to provide feedback to their students during a webinar, while a Poetry Center event will teach writing skills to kids.
For more information about what's going on at the UA, check out the Master Calendar.
OSIRIS-REx is set to arrive at its destination on Dec. 3. Come celebrate this milestone for the UA-led mission with a family-friendly variety show.
In attendance will be Dante Lauretta, OSIRIS-REx's principal investigator and College of Humanities faculty members, as well as artists, musicians and other special guests. Geoff Notkin, one of the hosts of the Science Channel's "Meteorite Men," will host the event, which will explore how folk tales have inspired modern space exploration.
The event will run from 6-9 p.m. at the Fox Tucson Theatre, 17 W. Congress St. Admission is $10, or $6 for anyone with a CatCard.
Interested in more OSIRIS-REx events? The Flandrau Science Center and Planetarium will host an arrival celebration event featuring talks with the mission's scientists, hands-on activities and more.
Attendees will hear from Bashar Rizk, a senior staff scientist at the UA Lunar and Planetary Laboratory and the expert on the cameras OSIRIS-REx will use to scan Bennu. Rizk will present at 2 p.m. on Dec. 1. Then, on Dec. 2 at 2 p.m., Lauretta, the mission's principal investigator, will give an overview of the mission, detailing the significance of the spacecraft's arrival and what lies ahead. A fulldome digital projection planetarium show, titled "Asteroid: Mission Extreme," will follow Lauretta's talk. Hands-on activities from 1-4 p.m. on both days will teach visitors about the science behind the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft.
Regular admission will be discounted to $4 for "Asteroid Ahoy!" All the OSIRIS-REx presentations are free.
Join members of the UA Police Department, the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve and the UA Naval ROTC as they collect new, unwrapped toys for Marine Toys for Tots and nonperishable food items for the UA Campus Pantry. Marine Toys for Tots is a national program that collects new toys for less fortunate children on Christmas. The Campus Pantry assists food-insecure members of the UA community.
The event will be held at the intersection of University Boulevard and Cherry Avenue, near the Main Library and Meinel Optical Sciences, from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Toys and food also can be dropped off at UAPD, 1852 E. First St., any time before Dec. 12.
UA Science Cafés | Dec. 5, 6, 11, 13 and 18
UA Science Cafés, presented by the College of Science, gives attendees the chance to immerse themselves in UA research in an informal setting. Cafés have been held at five locations in the Tucson area throughout the fall, with the final cafés of the season happening in December.
A Dec. 5 café on Tumamoc Hill will cover plant and animal interactions in a biosphere reserve in Mexico's Sonoran Desert. On Dec. 6, Brian Enquist, a professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, will present a talk at the Tucson Botanical Gardens on the future of global biodiversity and ecosystem health. Wolfgang Peti, who holds the Homer C. and Emily Davis Weed Endowed Chair in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, will deliver a Dec. 11 lecture at SaddleBrooke TWO on how new technologies can be leveraged to create drug treatments for cancer and diabetes.
A Dec. 13 café at Borderlands Brewing Co. will feature Nupur Joshi, a doctoral student in the School of Geography and Development, who will discuss "water cartels" in a Nairobian village. And Brenda Frye, an assistant professor and assistant astronomer in the Department of Astronomy and Steward Observatory, will speak at Magpies Gourmet Pizza on Dec. 18 about her research on gravitational lensing to better understand galaxies' evolution.
Cafés are free. Talks held at Tucson Botanical Gardens include free access to stroll the gardens before and after the talk.
This interactive webinar, presented by the Office of Instruction and Assessment, will teach faculty ways to give useful feedback to their students at the end of a course via D2L. Participants will discuss strategies and reasons for giving final feedback to their students, and review how to submit final grades.
Kris McGinnis, instructional applications support specialist in the Office of Instruction and Assessment, and Lindsay Hansen, assistant professor of practice, will facilitate the webinar.
The webinar runs from 10-10:45 a.m. Click here to register.
Kids Create | Dec. 15
Presented by the UA Poetry Center, Kids Create is three hours of workshops, music, activities and refreshments for children 10 years old and younger. The day begins with hourlong creative writing workshops, three of which are offered simultaneously for different age groups.
Workshops are followed by a breakfast, featuring healthy food and coffee, and a concert of live local music that both kids and adults will enjoy. Drop-in writing activities, games and typewriters will be scattered throughout the center's library and available for use until the library closes.
Kids Create is held in the Poetry Center's Helen S. Schaefer Building, 1508 E. Helen St. The event is free and open to the public.