Astronomy Graduates Network (AGN)


Astronomy grad students socializing at the Big Red Barn for TGIF.

The Astronomy Graduate Network (AGN) serves to represent and promote the interests and visions of graduate students in the Astronomy Department and Space Sciences Building. AGN also aims to foster a sense of grad student community and to increase awareness and enthusiasm for Astronomy at Cornell and within the general public.

To these ends, it holds a variety of events each year, including a weekly journal club and Grad Student and Post-Doc Seminar (GSPS), often followed by an informal TGIF get-together at the Big Red Barn. AGN also hosts frequent social events, including game nights, ice cream socials, informal dinners with faculty, camping trips, and more. The elected AGN officers (President, Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, Outreach Coordinator, and Field Representative) work with the graduate student body to organize these events and administrate AGN's activities as an official Cornell student organization.

Museum in the Dark 2019
Museum in the Dark outreach event in 2019.

Outreach: AGN cares deeply about doing regular outreach to the broader Cornell and Ithaca communities and beyond. Our regular annual events include Museum in the Dark, 4-H Career Explorations, Expanding Your Horizons, and Science Day at the Big Red Barn. Graduate students are encouraged to participate in these activities, both as organizers and volunteers. In addition to the activities mentioned above, which are oriented towards pre-school through high-school age groups, graduate students frequently have the opportunity to give public evening talks at local libraries. Grad students in the field of Space Sciences can also engage in outreach through the Space and Planetary Imaging Facility (SPIF) located in the Space Sciences Building. People interested in the outreach events AGN has to offer and ways to get involved should contact the Outreach Coordinator (listed below under officers).


AGN also maintains the Ask an Astronomer website, where graduate students can answer questions from the public about astronomy and astrophysics. The Ask an Astronomer website has been visited millions of times by public users.

Peer Mentoring Network: The AGN Peer Mentoring Network connects incoming graduate students with upper-level graduate student mentors. Mentors meet regularly with incoming students starting in the summer prior to their first year and provide them with resources and support during their transition into the program. Questions about the AGN Peer Mentoring Network should be directed to the current Peer Mentoring Coordinator Trevor Foote (


AGN Events

Here is a list of our typical recurring events. The rooms these events usually occur in are listed, but all events are currently virtual. Please contact JT Laune ( if you are interested in attending.


- Fridays 3:30pm - Room 622

Coffee Hours

- Mondays 1:30 pm - Room 622: Paper discussion 

- Thursdays 3:30 pm - Room 105: Colloquium speaker and casual talking 

Game Night

- Wednesday nights - Room 622


- Tuesdays 8:00pm - Big Red Barn

Other events include: 

  • Fall/Spring/Summer BBQ
  • Camping trip to the Adirondacks over Fall Break
  • Panel on postdoctoral positions
  • Dinner with a Professor
  • Museum in the Dark outreach program
  • Focus for Teens outreach program
  • Expanding Your Horizons outreach program
  • Ask an Astronomer Live
  • 50 Hour Trivia


Current 2024-25:


  • President: Chad Popik
  • Vice President: Maura Lally
  • Treasurer: Sashabaw Niedbalski
  • Secretary: Maddie Pettine
  • Outreach Coordinator: Alexia Kubas
  • Field Rep: Charlie Detelich
  • Advisor: Nikole Lewis


  • President: Chad Popik
  • Vice President: Sashabaw Niedbalski
  • Treasurer: Raagini Patki
  • Secretary: Maddie Pettine
  • Field Rep: Katie Chapman
  • Outreach Coordinator: Olive Ross
  • Advisor: David Chernoff


  • President: Trevor Foote (
  • Vice President: Lukas Wenzl (
  • Treasurer: JT Laune (
  • Secretary: JT Laune (
  • Field Rep: Chris O'Connor (
  • Outreach Coordinator: Jonathan Davis (
  • Advisor: David Chernoff


  • President: Stella Ocker 
  • Vice President: Gabriel Bonilla
  • Treasurer: JT Laune
  • Secretary: Lukas Wenzl
  • Field Rep: Chris O'Connor
  • Outreach Coordinator: Christopher Roone (
  • Advisor: David Chernoff


  • President: Abhinav Jindal
  • Vice President: Christopher Rooney
  • Treasurers: Ross Jennings
  • Secretary: Stella Ocker
  • Field Rep: Catie Ball
  • Advisor: David Chernoff


  • President: Andrew Foster
  • Vice President: Christopher Rooney
  • Treasurer: Victoria Calafut
  • Secretary: Ishan Mishra
  • Field Rep: Christian Tate
  • Advisor: David Chernoff


  • President: Jack Madden
  • Vice President: Matt Hankins
  • Treasurers: Victoria Calafut and Avani Gowardhan 
  • Secretary: Andrew Foster
  • Field Rep: Marika Leitner
  • Advisor: David Chernoff


  • President: Paul Corlies
  • Vice President: Sam Birch
  • Treasurer: Cody Lamarche
  • Webmaster/Secretary: Michelle Vick
  • Advisor: David Chernoff


  • President: Michael Lam
  • Vice President: Yucian Hong
  • Treasurer: Thea Kozakis
  • Webmaster/Secretary: Sam Birch
  • Advisor: David Chernoff


  • President: Tyler Pauly
  • Vice President: Thea Kozakis
  • Treasurer: Mike Jones
  • Webmaster/Secretary: Michael Lam
  • Advisor: David Chernoff


  • President: Tyler Pauly 
  • Vice President: Mike Jones 
  • Treasurer: Eva-Maria Mueller
  • Webmaster/Secretary: Michael Lam 
  • Advisor: David Chernoff


  • President: Joyce Byun
  • Vice President: Tyler Pauly
  • Treasurer: Everett Schlawin 
  • Webmaster/Secretary: Michael Lam
  • Advisor: David Chernoff


  • President: Dan Tamayo 
  • Vice President: Joyce Byun
  • Treasurer: Everett Schlawin
  • Webmaster/Secretary: Patrick Lii 
  • Advisor: David Chernoff


  • President: Carl Ferkinhoff 
  • Vice President: Kassie Wells 
  • Treasurer: Betsey Adams 
  • Secretary/Webmistress: Ann Martin
  • Advisor: Jim Bell


Graduate Resources

AGN tries to keep track of the great resources Cornell and the wider community has to offer for graduate students in astronomy. This section will be updated as the resources change. Last update: 9/2018


  • Cornell's library resources specifically geared toward Astronomy Graduates! Amazing stuff here to build a solid foundation as a rising researcher (
  • Cornell offers some great resources to help improve your teaching (


Fellowships that astronomy students can apply for. Ask around for advice on applications, many graduates have applied to these in the past. 

Program Deadline Link Notes
NSF GRFP Late October

GRFP link 

GRFP 2018 link

Must be US citizen. Has outreach component.

NESSF Early February 


NESSF 2018 link



ASTAR MUREP 2018 link

Must be US citizen.
Hertz Foundation Late October Hertz link Must be US citizen. College Seniors and 1st year grads only.
Ford Foundation December Ford link US Citizen, US Nationals, US Permanent Residents, DACA, Asylum Seekers


Astrobetter is a great resource for all professional astronomers (

Astrobites is a site run by graduate students in astronomy which has some great guides for surviving in the field (

Astronomy Allies is a network of people in the field of astronomy who will help if you are faced with harassment (