Friends' Survey Results
The Friends of Hawaii Astronomy survey sent out with the paper
version of the summer issue of "Na
Kilo Hoku" yielded
some great suggestions. For example, one respondent proposed
the IfA's Web site show real-time observations on the UH
2.2-meter telescope, or possibly, the NASA
Infrared Telescope. Webcams already
operate on the summit to monitor weather conditions, and we
are exploring the possibility of also showing observing.
Other suggestions included having the Friends offer mini astronomy
courses and briefings on special astronomical events. These
two ideas are already being implemented; staff are researching
the feasibility of mini courses, and information about activities
related to the recent sunspot and solar flare was disseminated
by e-mail to the Friends. Distributing this kind of information
by regular mail or highlighting it on the IfA Web site is in
progress or being investigated.
The survey revealed that this newsletter is by far the most
common way for people to receive information about the IfA
(92%), with 25% also visiting our Web site, and 8% relying
on news from acquaintances. The survey was useful in reaching
out to individuals who have not yet joined the Friends (67%).
Those who expressed an interest have been sent membership invitations
with copies of the "Explore" brochure. Current Friends
comprised 33% of the respondents; of that group three-fourths
said they would increase the amount of their membership gift
to help cover the costs of an expanded Friends program.
All the activities listed generated interest among respondents.
Stargazing was the most popular with 75%; lectures, the Open
House, and tours of astronomy facilities each garnered a 58%
interest rating. They were followed by luncheon events with
astronomers at 42% and receptions at 33%.
Based on your responses and suggestions, we hope to craft
a program of activities and communicate more regularly with
all who are interested in astronomy and the Institute.