Skip to main content
Menu Icon

2017 Conference

Gravitational Wave Astronomy

Thursday, August 10-11, 2017
University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

27th Annual Wisconsin Space Conference
UW-La Crosse Student Union
3200 Student Union, La Crosse, WI
Conference — Thursday, Aug. 10-11, 2017
7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.


The University of Wisconsin-La Crosse will host the 27th annual Wisconsin Space Conference on Thursday and Friday, Aug. 10-11, 2017, in the university’s Student Union. The theme of this year’s conference is “Gravitational Wave Astronomy.” 

The conference kicks off at 7:30 a.m. Thursday with breakfast and an opening keynote by Dr. Thomas Corbitt, who has worked with the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO).  Dr. Corbitt conducts research on quantum noise in gravitational wave detectors.. Throughout the day, attendees will hear about NASA partnerships, student research, K-12 outreach, academic and industry research, and WSGC team projects. There will be a poster and networking session, and an awards ceremony. 

Guests are invited to attend Dr. B. Chad Starks’ “Being Space Grant’s Messenger:  Increasing Minority Representation in STEM” workshop from 8 a.m - 12 p.m. on Friday, April 11, 2017.

Download the 2017 Conference Brochure

Thursday Keynote Speaker: Thomas Corbitt, Ph. D.

Assistant Professor of Physics
Louisiana State University

Dr. Corbitt began working with the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) at the Hanford facility.  He was advised by Nergis Mavalvala - known for her role in the first observation of gravitational waves.  Corbitt’s research has focused on quantum noise in gravitational wave detectors, and how that noise may be mitigated by the use of squeezed light and opto-mechanics to make the next generation of detectors more sensitive.

Dr Corbitt received his Ph. D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).  He received his undergraduate degree from Georgia Tech in 2001.  

Friday Workshop Speaker: B. Chad Starks Ph. D.

CEO, BCS & Associates Consulting Firm
Associate Director, Delaware Space Grant Consortium

Dr. Starks is a speaker, author, and critical criminologist.  For more than twenty years, he has worked to build social justice and equity for individuals, organizations and communities.  In his dissertation, he examined the social organizational structure of bail systems in large cities. 

Dr. Starks received his Ph. D. in criminology from the University of Delaware, an M.A. in criminal justice from the University of South Carolina, and a B.A. in sociology from Wofford College. 

To register or for more information:


Contact the Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium at or call 262-551-6054.

Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium apparel is available for pre-purchase

 during registration.

Sizes available:  XS - 2XL
Polos:  $25
1/4 Zip Pullover:  $30
Ladies and tall sizes available upon request. Contact the WSGC office.  

Background Image of Earth