Vera Demchenko

  • Brooke Owens Fellow, Class of 2019

  • University of Colorado Boulder, Astrophysics & Philosophy, '19

  • Host Institution: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

  • Mentor: Emily Calandrelli

Vera is an astrophysics major at CU Boulder. She is completing a philosophy minor to satisfy the questions that are not typically addressed in physics classrooms. She has been interested in astronomy ever since she was six years old, but her high school teacher is the person that inspired her to pursue astrophysics in college.

Since freshman year, Vera has been extensively involved in STEM outreach. Her position as a presenter at Fiske Planetarium has been instrumental to astronomy outreach. She is involved in several clubs at her university: CU STARs, an outreach club that brings astronomy knowledge and telescopes to underrepresented parts of Colorado, CU SEDS (Students for the Exploration and Development of Space), URSA (Underrepresented Students in Astronomy), SPS (Society of Physics Students), and Russian Club, where she held president's position for a year.

As a Brooke Fellow, Vera will be working at NASA Goddard this summer. She will use her experience in outreach, education, and astronomy to help NASA develop an exhibit for the public. She is finishing up her senior year at CU Boulder and hopes to pursue planetary science research after getting industry experience.