AO RET Summer Program

Summer 2017 (2 months)


The Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico invites applications for its NSF-funded Research Experience for Teachers (RET) Summer Program. The Teacher selected for the program will work with staff scientists on projects related to ongoing research or instrumentation development. Will be exposed to the interdisciplinary character of this unique research facility through lectures by the staff and visiting scientists, seminar series, tours of the observatory facilities and frequent informal discussions with staff and scientists. The teacher will also expect to have the opportunity to conduct hands-on observing with the 305-m telescope. Participating RET Teacher will receive the same stipend as the students participating at the Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program and reside for 10 weeks in the Visiting Scientist Quarters at the observatory, where meals are available in a cafeteria. Room and board will be covered.


Teachers who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents and who are currently licensed or certified by Puerto Rico Department of Education (part time or full time in Puerto Rico) during Fall 2017 are eligible for our program. Open to Science or Computer Science, Mathematics Teachers who work secondary level at Public Schools.

Application Process

Applications for the RET program should be made via the online form. You will need to provide the name and email address of your school director as your referee.  We encourage you to fill out this online application form as early as possible so that your referee have sufficient time to upload their letter of recommendation.

Once you have submitted the online form, you will be sent a link to verify your email address. Your referee will not be contacted until you have verified your email by clicking the provided link.

After email verification, we will send you a link to upload your supporting documents. Requirements for the supporting documents are given below and in the FAQ page. Your application is not complete until we receive all the supporting documents.

We expect to announce a decision on April 21, 2017. The RET summer program is scheduled to run from the beginning of June to end of July. The exact date might differ slightly depending on you and your project mentor's calendars.

Supporting Documents

Resume / CV
Should contain education details, previous employment, research / lab experiences, technical and programming skills, publications and awards. Maximum of two pages in PDF format.
Personal Essay
Describe your educational background and goals, and your scientific interests and experience. Describe how this experience can impact your teaching. Maximum of two pages in PDF format.
Letter from School Director
Director should include information relevant to the evaluation of your potential as a research teacher.

Teacher's Ceritifcation
Teacher should submit a valid certification issued by the Dept. of Education of Puerto Rico.


Online Application Deadline
April 17, 2017
Supporting Documents Deadline
April 17, 2017
We will send final decisions, after all positions are filled.
RET program
June - July, 2017 (Two months)


Please look at the FAQ page for additional information regarding the application process, requirements for supporting documents, topics to include in resume etc. If your question is not answered there, or if your situation is unique, please feel free to email us at

The Arecibo Observatory Research Experience for Undergraduates program is funded by the National Science Foundation under grant number AST/1559849.