Dr. Stella Offner received her BA in Physics and Mathematics from Wellesley College, and her MA and PhD in Physics from the University of California, Berkeley.
During my first 18 years, I lived in a small town in rural Pennsylvania.
I left the state to attend Wellesley College in MA, where I majored
in physics and mathematics. I divided my time there between my studies, playing the French horn, and getting off campus.
I spent a year abroad at Oxford University, which was wonderful... unless it was raining. To distract myself from
the inclement weather and the hordes of tourists, I began to learn belly dancing. When I returned to Wellesley, I
founded a belly dancing society and completed a senior thesis in which I simulated electrorheological fluids in shear
flow. This research motivated my interest in computational applications of physics.
To escape the glacial winters of the northeast, I moved to California in 2003 to begin graduate school in physics
at UC Berkeley. For my thesis, I performed parallel self-gravitating, radiation-hydrodynamics simulations that happen
to make lovely webpage images. While my code was running, I danced in Suhaila Salimpour's Repertoire Ensemble.
For my research I perform computer simulations of how stars like our sun form. I'm very interested in outreach projects, especially those connecting girls and cool science; I've participated in Expanding Your Horizons and Science Club for Girls, and I'm currently a WorldWide Telescope Ambassador.
(In this role I introduce people to the WWT at various science fairs and make publicly accessible "tours" on topics related to my research.)
I was an NSF post-doctoral fellow at the Institute for Theory and Computation within the Harvard-Smithsonian
Center for Astrophysics from 2009-2012.
In 2012 I started as a Hubble Fellow at Yale University.