The Wildwood Institute for STEM Research and Development (WISRD) invites K-12 students and parents and community members interested in topics relating to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics to the spring event in its community lecture series at Wildwood School middle and upper campus, located at 11811 Olympic Blvd., in West Los Angeles.

On Monday, May 11, at 6:30 p.m. residents are invited to commemorate they school’s new Wildwood Innovation Lab and learn about the 3D printers, a weather station, cosmic ray detector, computer network, electronics lab, and more.

Students from WISRD will present their current research projects including variable black hole, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, holography, and reef biology. The evening will also feature guest speaker Dr. Shoko Sakai who will present on black holes. Sakai is an assistant research astronomer and adjunct professor in the UCLA Physics and Astronomy department.

Sakai is an Assistant Research Astronomer and Adjunct Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at UCLA. She received her B.A. in Physics from Cornell University and her Ph.D. in Physics and Astronomy from Dartmouth College. She then joined the HST Key Project on the extragalactic distance scale at IPAC and continued her work on distance scale at NOAO in Tucson. She has been a research astronomer at UCLA since 2000. Her work focused on several distance indicators and understanding their systematics, including the Cepheid variable stars, tip of the red giant branch method and Tully-Fisher relation for spiral galaxies. She also worked on star formation history of galaxies in nearby clusters of galaxies.

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