The Department of Astronomy at Harvard offers a rich and varied program of theoretical, observational, and experimental graduate work leading to the Ph.D. in astronomy. Students enjoy opportunities to conduct research in nearly every branch of astronomy and astrophysics and access to CfA's extensive facilities.
SAO's Predoctoral Program is open to current graduate students pursuing thesis research in astrophysics or related fields. Applicants engaged in theory, observation, instrument development, or laboratory experiments at a university or college are strongly encouraged to apply.
Students enrolled in the University of Southampton's (UK) Honors Astronomy can also do research for their Masters thesis at SAO through participation in the SAO/University of Southampton "Astrophysics with a Year Abroad (M. Phys.)" program. While academic oversight remains with the Southampton advisor, the SAO host provides day-to-day scientific direction on work on a topic of mutual interest during the September to May academic year.
The Department of Astronomy offers three options for Astronomy concentration: basic, honors, and joint honors. The most frequently pursued joint honors combination is with physics although other choices are available. Secondary fields in the department are also offered.
The SAO Summer Intern Program invites undergraduates interested in careers in astronomy, astrophysics, physics, or related physical sciences the opportunity to work with a CfA staff member on a research project. Funded by the National Science Foundation and the Smithsonian Institution, the program is open to students enrolled in a degree program leading to a bachelor's degree.
The SAO/NSF Solar REU Intern Program invites undergraduates interested in careers in solar physics, astrophysics, physics, or related physical sciences the opportunity to work with a CfA staff member on a solar physics research project. Funded by the National Science Foundation, the program is open to students who are US citizens enrolled in a degree program leading to a bachelor's degree.
The Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory-University of Massachusetts/Latino Initiative Program (SAO-UMass/LIP) is a unique internship program that welcomes talented undergraduate science majors who participate in the Urban Massachusetts Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (UMLSAMP) Programs located on the campuses of the University of Massachusetts. Partnering with the University of Massachusetts (UMASS), the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) provides summer internships to 6 students within the consortium annually. With generous support from the National Science Foundation, the Program sponsors seminars and outreach activities that raise awareness about the journeys, accomplishments, and ambitions of Latinos and other underrepresented communities within physics and astronomy. The Program has welcomed undergraduate majors in physics, computer science, chemistry, biology, and engineering, which is reflective of the increasing interdisciplinary nature of science.