Skip to content
Residency Program

Astronomer in Residence

Photo by Imma Barrera, Astronomer in Residence 2022

The Grand Canyon Astronomer in Residence program spreads awareness and value around Grand Canyon’s pristine dark skies, connecting industry experts with visitors.

Milky Way at Grand Canyon by Imma Barrera
Astronomer in residence color horizontal logo

About the Program

The Astronomer in Residence program at Grand Canyon National Park offers astronomers and dark-sky advocates from diverse fields—including science, technology, arts, and conservation— the opportunity to practice and share their discipline with park visitors under one of the most pristine night skies in the United States. Through educational outreach and creative connection, the program hopes to inspire visitors to see the value of night skies, spread awareness about the threats of light pollution, and explore society's complex relationship with natural darkness.  

The program is tied directly to the National Park Service Interpretation and Resource Education goal of dark sky preservation and Grand Canyon Conservancy’s mission to inspire generations of park champions to cherish and support the natural and cultural wonder of Grand Canyon.

Astronomers, both professional and amateur, scientists from ecologists to geologists, dark-sky advocates, educators, writers, and other practitioners with expertise in the night sky are encouraged to apply. We seek a variety of voices and strategies for engaging our visitors with dark sky preservation.  

Annually, three “astronomers” are selected to live and work on the South Rim of Grand Canyon in Arizona. Astronomers in Residence deliver at least two public programs per week during their stay. In exchange, residents stay in a private apartment overlooking the Canyon for 4-8 weeks and receive media exposure, a weekly stipend, and modest support with supply and travel costs. Additionally, residents have special access to Grand Canyon National Park, park leadership, staff expertise, on-site resources, archives, and international visitors. Alumni are often invited to participate in additional opportunities like proposal reviews, webinars, blog posts, and dark sky events.  

The Astronomer in Residence application period for 2025 is open now through July 15, 2024. Click here for more information. 

2024 Residencies

February 8 – 26

Dr. Adeene Denton

During her time at the Canyon, Denton will be working on a short site-specific dance that explores the geologic history of the Grand Canyon, the formation of planets, and how we as humans physically embody those same forces to build deeper connections with the world around us.

March 4 – 31

Dr. Ashley Pagnotta

Combining her love of dark skies and fiber arts, Pagnotta will be working with park visitors on a fiber-based dark sky map that highlights light pollution levels throughout the world.

X3 A4585
September 23 – November 4

Dr. David Koerner

During his time at Grand Canyon, Dr. Koerner will be working on a book that connects individuals with vast stretches of time, and writing musical compositions that emotively represent significant periods of time in Grand Canyon’s sky and strata.


Contact us for additional information.

Clover Morell headshot

Clover Morell

Residency Program Manager, Grand Canyon Conservancy