Outreach and Public Engagement at KIPAC

KIPAC is proud to offer a wide variety of educational programs for student and the general public to explore the wonders of the cosmos. Below summarizes the current programs we are offering, all of which are free of charge.

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Public Lecture

Public Lectures

Discover Our Universe public lecture is a series of free and engaging presentations on astrophysics, designed for the general public and students above 9th grade, and open to all. Given by KIPAC astrophysicists and occasionally external speakers, these lectures are now occurring on a bi-monthly basis and offered in a hybrid format. You are welcome to join us either online or in-person! If you are interested in checking out our past virtual lectures, please visit the KIPAC YouTube page.

Telescope Viewings

With access to the 24-inch telescope at the Stanford Student Observatory and a number of digital telescopes (eVscopes) and optical telescopes, KIPAC offers regular, in-person stargazing parties that introduce the public to the beautiful night sky. In addition, we also offer telescope viewing opportunities during astronomical events (solar and lunar eclipses, planet transits, etc.). Join our mailing list or check out the "upcoming events" on this page for upcoming stargazing parties.

SPINWIP 2024 flyer


The Stanford Program for Inspiring the Next Generation of Women in Physics (SPINWIP) is a 3-week virtual summer program to get high-school girls excited about Physics. Organized by KIPAC and the Stanford Physics Department, this program aims to provide participants with an overview of major subareas of Physics, hands-on experience in computer programing, and opportunities to closely interact with undergraduate students, graduate students, and faculty. The program is completely free to participants, and we strongly encourage students from disadvantaged backgrounds to apply. Application for SPINWIP 2024 has now closed.

Community Day (KIPAC Open House)

Every year we invite the local community to join our Open House to learn more about the Universe and the exciting discoveries we have made. Co-hosted by both KIPAC and the SLAC National Laboratory, the event offers immersive science-learning experiences through interactive exhibits, live demonstrations, workshops, lectures, mini tours, with refreshments and giveaways provided! Activities at Community Day are suitable for a wide range of ages and levels; families with kids are especially encouraged to attend. This year KIPAC was a major participant in the Stanford STEM Fest on April 20, 2024.

Noches Astronómicas

¿Prefieres aprender astronomía en español? ¡Únase a nosotros en Noches Astronómicas! Noches Astronómicas is a series of Spanish events that provide Spanish-speaking individuals with a window into learning astrophysics and careers in physics/astrophysics through short lectures and informal conversations. These events are open to all Spanish speakers and we especially welcome K-12 students, families, local residents, and Stanford affiliates to join us! These events are held quarterly on the Stanford campus and in local schools or libraries. If you work in a county-, city-, district-level office and are interested in co-hosting Noches Astronómicas with us at one of your community centers, please contact Dr. Xinnan Du (xinnandu@stanford.edu) and Dr. Enrique Lopez-Rodriguez (enloro@stanford.edu). Our next event will be held in Summer 2024 on the Stanford campus.

IR Cam

Classroom Visits

Interested in inviting a KIPAC scientist to speak with your classroom about their research and/or their career path? Please contact us! KIPAC members are available to visit your classroom in-person or virtually and have an open discussion with your students. We hope to create positive learning experiences for students and form a personal connection between the current and future generation of STEM professionals. For inquires and requests, please contact Dr. Xinnan Du (xinnandu@stanford.edu).

In addition to KIPAC-hosted events and offerings, KIPAC members are also active contributors to the following programs organized by our valuable partners:

SLAC Tours

SLAC Public Lectures

Ever wonder what goes on at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory? The SLAC Public Lecture Series is your chance to find out! The evening lectures highlight the cutting-edge science happening at the laboratory. Including the latest discoveries from KIPAC and from across the lab, SLAC public lectures provide non-scientists with a unique insight into the workings of our universe.

SLAC Tours

SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory offers free tours for the public and for school groups. In-person tours last approximately 90 minutes, and often include the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) camera and the KIPAC visualization lab with 3D movies of the cosmos. Due to COVID-19, the tours have been offered virtually. You can join a guided or self-guided virtual tour here.

After Dark

Bay Area Science Festival

KIPAC regularly participates in the Bay Area Science Festival (BASF), an annual celebration of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The Festival features hundreds of hands-on-activities, provocative conversations, and tours of facilities, all designed to connect you with the Bay's scientists and engineers. KIPAC participated in the After Dark program at the Exploratorium as part of the BASF in 2022!


SAGE-S (Science Accelerating Girls' Engagement in STEM) is a one week long on-campus residential summer camp for public high school students (age 14-17) held at SLAC.  It is hosted by scientists and engineers from KIPAC and across the lab who share what everyday life is like in the STEM profession.