Ashley Villar astronomer



Hi, my name is Ashley Villar! I use data-driven methods and machine learning to study the eruptions, mergers and explosions of stars. I’m especially interested in utilizing multiband light curves to understand the underlying physics of optical transients.

I am an Assistant Professor at the Pennsylvania State University.

Between 07/20 and 07/21, I was a Simons Junior Fellow at Columbia University and the Flatiron Institute. I received my PhD in Astronomy & Astrophysics from Harvard in 2020, where I was a NSF Graduate Research Fellow and Ford Foundation Dissertation Fellow working with Edo Berger. I graduated from MIT in 2014 where I majored in physics and minored in mathematics. I wrote my senior thesis with John Johnson and Josh Winn on asteroseismology.

In my spare time, I volunteer, climb, and do a number of silly projects with my husband like understanding the statistics of ghost hunting and training a neural network to dance at our wedding. I am originally from Vero Beach, Florida and proudly Peruvian-American.

You can find a public, shortened version of my CV here.

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