SaddleBrooke Skygazers: Skygazers Meeting Features ‘Space, Hope, and Charity’

Sam Miller

The SaddleBrooke Skygazers Astronomy Club is pleased to host Charity Woodrum, a PhD candidate and National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow at the University of Arizona’s Steward Observatory, on Sunday, Dec. 10, at the DesertView Theater, 39900 S. Clubhouse Drive, at 7 p.m. Charity’s story, Space, Hope, and Charity, is an independent documentary film by Sandy Cummings. The film follows the journey of Charity Woodrum who overcomes poverty and then tragedy while chasing her dream of becoming an astrophysicist. After tragically losing her husband and young son, Charity gets her life and her dream back on track with help from childhood friends, mentors, and complete strangers. The film is a story of love and loss and of finding purpose, even joy, again after losing everything. Woven through the film are themes of women in STEM, barriers to education, the importance of mentorship, and the lifesaving power of human connection.

Charity is a Doctoral Candidate and National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow at Steward Observatory, University of Arizona, working under the supervision of Professor Marcia Rieke. She is also a member of NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope Near-IR Camera (NIRCam) science team and the JADES collaboration. She earned a bachelor’s degree in physics at the University of Oregon. Charity’s research is in the field of galaxy evolution. She seeks to understand the drivers of galaxy mass growth and the physical processes that cause galaxies to stop forming stars. To do so, she uses the observations of galaxies, with both ground-based and space-based telescopes, to study their star formation and chemical enrichment histories.

The SaddleBrooke Skygazers Astronomy Club meets monthly (and typically) on the second Sunday evening at 7 p.m. at the DesertView Theater. The winter Star Parties are scheduled on Thursday, Dec. 14; Thursday, Jan. 11; and Tuesday, Feb, 13, at the softball field parking lot. The public is welcome to both meetings and Star Parties. Club and Star Party information can be obtained by emailing Sam Miller at [email protected].