ASN recognizes our outstanding volunteers in many ways. Read more about them here and on our Volunteer Profiles page.
Anita Rossall Lifetime Achievement Award | E.R. Ward Neale Award
Anita Rossall Lifetime Achievement Award - read more about this award →
Recipient 2018 Nick Malychuk
Recipient 2014 Lucio Gelmini Ph.D.
Recipient 2011 Godfrey Nowlan Ph.D.
E. R. Ward Neale Award - read more about this award and previous recipients →
Recipient 2018 - Robbie Halonen Ph.D.
"As an academic, I think outreach is an assumed responsibility. All of us should be doing this, it’s part of the job, just something we should do. I feel very passionately about this – increasing science literacy wherever we can."
Robbie has a PhD from Western University (Ontario) and his specialty is massive stars, all hotter than our own sun. He has been volunteering with ASN since December 2014 and covers Grade 6 Sky Science and Grade 8 Light and Optical Systems but is best known for demonstrations with his mobile planetarium. In the 2017-2018 season, Robbie was acting as the co-chair of Red Deer College's Department of Science and Engineering. Despite that busy role, he found time to tour with the mobile planetarium for two weeks, instead of his usual one. This second week enabled him to visit parts of rural Central Alberta which we hadn't been able to visit before. Just in the 2017-2018 season, he did 47 presentations to 1275 kids!
"I have had a great time with the mobile planetarium. They already had good kids, they were so excited about the planetarium. It was amazing to see the excitement and passion some of the kids had. In my presentations, I ask a lot of questions. I’ll ask a hard question such as how many stars are in the Milky Way (there are 200-400 billion), and there were some who actually already knew this fact. It’s neat when students know the answer already, it shows their passion about the topic already."
"The goal with outreach isn’t necessarily to educate, but to inspire. If you get kids to ask questions, then they’re on the path to science. So it’s not just about facts, but to look for themselves, to discover more things on their own."
“You never know which student in the class may be taking their very first steps toward a career in Science.”
John Cox, ASN volunteer and Chair of Earth Sciences Mount Royal University.
“It is immensely rewarding to be able to share knowledge with others. As a Scientist & Engineers-in-the-Classroom volunteer, ASN has afforded me many unique and memorable opportunities."
Dave Fowlow, ASN volunteer.