The Grand Rapids Public Museum (GRPM) in partnership with the Grand Rapids Amateur Astronomical Association (GRAAA) will host a presentation by the Iraq born astronomer and space science enthusiast, Dr. Nebil Y. Misconi, at Schuler Books & Music on Thursday, May 19.
Misconi is an accomplished astronomer and solar system researcher. In his book “An Immigrant’s Journey into the Cosmos – a Personal Memoir,” Misconi tells the journey of an immigrant astronomer from youth in Iraq to the United States. His presentation of the same name will highlight the political history of the Middle East and the struggles of living there during religious and political unrest through to his life and accomplishments in astronomy in the United States.
Misconi fell in love with astronomy when he read a book about stars as a high school student in the 1960s. He could not further his pursuit in his homeland and was able to study in Turkey and later immigrated to the United States, where he went on to a career in Florida.
“I decided to write about my life to inspire young students on what they can do when they put their minds to it, using what our country has to offer,” Misconi said.
Working first for the Space Institute Center at Florida Tech, and then for 16 years at the University of Central University in Orlando, Misconi has not only inspired students and the public with his instructional skills, but also contributed technical expertise to a number of high profile NASA space efforts, including SkyLab and the space shuttle programs. He has worked closely with notable space science personalities, including astronaut Buzz Aldrin.
The presentation “An Immigrant’s Journey into the Cosmos – A Personal Memoir” will take place at 7 p.m. on May 19 at Schuler Books, located at 2660 28th Street SE. The event is free. Marconi’s book of the same title will be available for purchase and a book signing by the author will take place following the talk.