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Joe Ciotti - Biography

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Dr. Joseph Ciotti was born in New York City, where he studied at the Hayden Planetarium while in high school. He received his BS in Astronomy from Georgetown University and moved to Hawaii in 1967 where he earned advanced degrees in astronomy and science education from the University of Hawaii. He taught math, computer and aerospace science at St. Louis High School for 16 years and has lectured at the Bishop Museum Planetarium since 1971. He is currently Professor of Astronomy, Physics & Mathematics at Windward Community College, where he also acts as the Coordinator for its Polynesian Voyaging program and as the WCCs Associate Director of the Hawaii Space Grant Consortium.

He is Director of Windward Community College's Center for Aerospace Education, which he established to support the college's space science-related curriculum and community outreach efforts. This center coordinates WCC's complex of space science-education facilities, including the Aerospace Exploration Lab (a hands-on science exploratorium), the Hoaaina Center for remote sensing and GIS (a NASA Center of Excellence), the Lanihuli Astronomical & Meteorological Observatory and Windward's soon-to-be-opened Hokulani Planetarium.

He was selected as Hawaii's Teacher-in-Space candidate while at St. Louis High School and continues as a NASA Space Ambassador. Among his other awards are:

  • Hawaii Professor of the Year from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching
  • Christa McAuliffe award for the National Aerospace Educator of the Year from the Aerospace Education Foundation
  • Crown Circle award for outstanding achievement in aerospace education from the National Congress on Aviation and Space Education
  • Excellence-in-Teaching awards at Windward Community College and St. Louis HS \item Robert Goddard Space Memorial Award

Last Updated on June 6, 2000

Karen Meech, Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii