Students view eclipse from Johnson Center field


UK students and faculty view the solar eclipse.

Michael Ayers

The Johnson Center fields were packed with students today, and it wasn’t just because of K Week.

The total solar eclipse took place Monday afternoon, and many students watched from the JC fields. Director of New Student and Family Programs Nancy Stephens said her office did not plan for a solar eclipse falling in the middle of K Week.

The Physics and Astronomy department approached Stephens and encouraged her office to purchase solar eclipse glasses.

Stephens said that because K Week is mostly for new students, she and her office thought these students might be unable to travel.

“We figured if we can make it happen for them on campus, that could only help,” Stephens said.

The Physics and Astronomy department brought its high-tech solar telescope to the fields.

“About 100 students organized a trip to totality, which unfortunately I couldn’t make, but the observatory director left me with access to a solar scope and a sun spotter,” graduate student Stacy Long said. Long and students organized a line for students and faculty to view the solar eclipse during its peak moments.

While the K Week department didn’t have enough glasses for every single person, many students shared glasses.

Senior Kiaysha Ward visited the JC fields to catch up with classmates and view the eclipse.

“It looked like magical darkness with light peeking through,” Ward said.

Retired faculty member Phil Berger said he wanted to share the experience with others in the community, which is better then doing it alone. Phil said it looked like a “chubby crescent moon.”

Freshman Eli Norman said he went to the JC fields today hoping to meet people since he is new to campus. Norman said the event was “well organized and exciting.”