Backer of the week

Welcome to the "backer of the week" blog!  The idea here is for backers to share something about themselves, and let the world know why this project is important to them. Check back weekly for updates!

Thomas Romer

New York, USA

I love projects like yours as it has the potential to change the way we view our universe. Should we find even the smallest — most remote evidence that we are not alone… that would have a profound effect to the way we all think about life and our place in the cosmos. Even if this is not the work of some kind of intelligent life, the process of discovery will help expand our collective wisdom.

Roger Wehbe & Francis Wehbe

Pennsylvania, USA

Last year my 10 year old (now 11) did a science project on the Star. It got him so excited with science that he REALLY applied himself in school.  This year, he is in all accelerated classes, and I believe part of that, if not most, could be directly attributed to this Kickstarter. We are all very proud of you Francis Wehbe! 

Morgan Schmitz

Paris, France

My name’s Morgan (or /u/Zaenon, if you’re one of those people) and I am a grad student at CEA Saclay, near Paris, France. I’ll be starting my PhD in cosmology there in just a few weeks, so while I pretty much never have the chance to get down to the scale of a single star in my work, I still think Tabby’s Star is the coolest thing ever.

 

In fact, I’ve been talking about it so much there’s a bit of a running joke in my group where people will always say "Have you heard about Tabby’s Star?!" in an overly excited voice whenever I’m around and somebody who hasn’t also is. I also get lots of jokes about how they’re sure I’ll never take off my WTF t-shirt once I get it - and they might just be right!

 

Apart from the obvious, scientific interest, what I also love about Tabby’s Star is the meta around it. From the discovery by Planet Hunters, to the success of the Kickstarter, to our community on the subreddit and the involvement of wonderful people and astronomers like Tabby and Jason Wright, I think the WTF project is setting an unprecedented example of wonderful science accessible to anybody who cares to jump in. And it’s not just outreach, either - I really feel like I am part of something super exciting, despite the actual, active science part being out of my reach given my current skills and knowledge.

 

And, well, I won’t lie - discussing the Fermi Paradox after varying amounts of beers (starting at none, of course!) is one of my favorite activities. However improbable it is, the fact that there is even the slightest chance for Tabby’s Star to turn out to be related to ETIs is a great excuse to do just that… And if you ask me, there is no such thing as a bad excuse to discuss alien life!

Chanda, Paul, Leila, and Raina Rozumski

Maryland, USA

My name is Chanda (pronounced Shanda and rhymes with panda) Rozumski. I was born and raised in Hawaii, but I am currently living in Maryland with my husband Paul (who is in the US Air Force) and two daughters Leila (10 years old) and Raina (14 months old). I am a high school English teacher, but currently taking time off to raise little Raina.  I love , reading, writing, playing video games and board games, and going to comic cons (all nerdy things!). I would love to learn to play the guitar and drums, become a master archer, and to have my own herb garden (one that I don’t have to dismantle because of another military move). I am a passionate learner. In fact, if I could get paid to be a college student for the rest of my life, I would! Learning about astronomy and the universe has always  been a constant goal on my bucket list. I love to learn, which is how I found Tabby Boyajian’s TED Talk and therefore became a huge fan of her mysterious star. Regardless of what it turns out to be, I appreciate what she does and her team’s enthusiasm and passion about learning more about this wondrous star.

Pirx Danford

Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany

Pirx is an aspiring SF author. On the picture he showcases his German debut novel Träume zwischen Welten. Available in English as Dreams among Stars. He loves a good mystery and wishes we could not just watch KIC
8462852 - but already be well on our way there.

 

With all the bad news surrounding us its initiatives like Kickstarter and projects like "Where’s the Flux?" which give him hope. Hope that enough people strive for betterment and empowerment, to make the difference the world needs. Science may not hold all the answers, but the facts it can provide are often awe-inspiring. To be a small part of the effort in finding this particular answer is making him proud beyond words and he is excited for the results Tabetha Boyajian and her team will find.

The Borelli Family

Molino, Florida

The Borelli’s, astronomy enthusiasts from Molino, Florida, are proud to back the important work of Tabetha Boyajian and her team as they investigate "The most mysterious star in the Galaxy.”

The Borelli Family (from left to right: Jacob, Joshua, Hunter, Colton, Anthony, Robyn, Camden and Alyssa)

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