Get to Know Gemini! Alexis Acohido

Get to Know Gemini is a new series of blog posts aimed to highlight the different careers, backgrounds, and types of people contributing to Gemini Observatory and its science.

Name: Alexis Acohido

What is your current position and at which telescope?

Iʻm the Media Relations and Local Outreach Assistant at Gemini North in Hilo, Hawaiʻi

In four lines or less, explain what you do as part of the Gemini Observatory team?

I manage Geminiʻs social media channels, including our Facebook, Twitter, and blog. I also assist in soliciting, editing and locally promoting Gemini press releases, web features, and articles. One of my favorite parts of my job is coordinating and participating in local outreach events and activities like our Journey Through the Universe  program, and finally Iʻm also a back up tour guide. I do a little bit of everything!

How long have you worked for Gemini?

 I started as an intern in August 2015, and was hired full-time in March 2016.

What drew you to this job?

love math and science and like talking to people about STEM subjects in a relaxed, easily digestible way. Iʻm also a huge advocate of science literacy, and this job allows me to be an advocate of science literacy.

What is the best part of your job?

The best part of my job is getting out into the community to hype up students and their families about astronomy! When students approach me in KTA telling me how much fun they had in our StarLab, it makes my heart happy.

Where are you originally from/where did you grow up?

 I was born on the island of Oʻahu and grew up in Kalihi.

What skill do you think is most important to know for your job?

Hard work. Technical skills and knowledge come with time, but taking initiative and being a hard worker will make you stand out.

Why is astronomy important?

Astronomy is important because itʻs awe-inspiring. I could list off myriad technological advances and scientific discoveries, and while thatʻs very cool, it gets pretty abstract for the layperson. But the experience of taking in the Milky Way on a clear night at the Visitorʻs Information Station on Maunakea canʻt be beat and is something anyone could experience. Astronomy is also important for me, personally, because itʻs also a way of connecting my Hawaiian heritage to my passion for science.

What is your favorite movie?

 [Insert Hayao Miyazaki film here]

What is the latest book you have read?

I read a lot. The last book I read and really liked was The Ghost Bride by Yangsze Choo. I like sci-fi, fantasy, and have read an embarrassing number of romance novels.

What three albums would you bring with you to a desert island?

The Fool – Ryn Weaver
Puberty 2 – Mitski
Skin and Earth – Lights

What is one hobby of yours?

I play lots of video games (mostly console) although Iʻve been known to make sparse Steam appearances on my friendsʻ lists.

Favorite beverage?

Non-alcoholic: Barqʻs rootbeer

Alcoholic: White Mountain Porter from Big Island Brewhaus

Check back next month to learn more about the staff that help Gemini to explore the Universe and share its wonders!

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