University Library Newsletter Issue 42 Spring Quarter 2023

Spring Time at McHenry Library with pink cherry blossoms and students walking

News from University Librarian Elizabeth Cowell

The Modern Library: An interview with Annette Marines, Librarian for Arts and Humanities

Designing the digital user experience to meet research needs - Meet Jessica Waggoner

Milestone land acknowledgement event brings campus, local tribe and community members together

New CART Exhibitions Opening June 15th

The Thread that Runs so True: Archival Connections of the Grateful Dead

"Big Questions: Astronomer Father and Artist Daughter" Exhibit in memory of late UCSC astronomer and astrophysicist on display at Science and Engineering Library


Elizabeth Cowell


Dear Friends,

As we bid farewell to another remarkable academic year and embrace the promise of new beginnings, I am thrilled to present the latest edition of our University Library's newsletter. Within this edition, you will catch a glimpse of the exciting developments and endeavors taking place within our library. From supporting educational pursuits to enriching user experiences, fostering community engagement, delving into the depths of archival research, and curating captivating exhibitions, our University Library is a vibrant hub of knowledge, exploration, and connection. Join us as we dive into the highlights from this past spring quarter. 

Allow me to introduce Annette Marines, our Arts and Humanities Librarian who shares her invaluable experience and insights, focusing on the vital support she provides to faculty members, graduate students, and undergraduates alike.

Next, we feature an article on Jessica Waggoner, our User Experience Librarian, who possesses extensive knowledge of the university's libraries and is dedicated to ensuring easy access to resources for both students and faculty. As libraries have transitioned to digital resources, the role of librarians has evolved to connect users with online information and understand their information-seeking behavior through user research.

Dr. Rebecca Hernandez, our Community Archivist, recently spearheaded a profound Land Acknowledgement event, paying tribute to the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band and their enduring historical ties to the land on which our university stands. This event fostered an enlightening discussion with Tribal Band Chairman Valentin Lopez, shedding light on the significance of acknowledgment and nurturing the relationship between our institution and the tribe. 

Under the guidance of Archivist Alix Norton, our talented fellows at the Center for Archival Research and Training (CART) have dedicated their efforts to curating two extraordinary exhibitions showcasing archival treasures from our Special Collections & Archives. Among these collections are the Ingeborg Gerdes Photographs and Papers, the Florence Wyckoff Papers, the William H. Friedland Papers, the William MacKenzie Papers, and the California Farm Research and Legislative Committee Records. We eagerly anticipate these exhibitions' opening later this month, with the gallery space on the third floor of McHenry Library proudly showcasing these remarkable displays for all to admire.

Moreover, we invite you to explore our latest exhibit in Dead Central, aptly titled "The Thread that Runs so True: Archival Connections of the Grateful Dead." This thought-provoking exhibit unearths the profound connections between the Grateful Dead and an array of artists, musicians, and activists, as revealed through the archival collections at UC Santa Cruz.

An exhibit showcasing the artistic work of Amey Mathews, daughter of the late astronomer Bill Mathews, who transformed her father's old notes into unique portraits, is displayed on the Sandra M. Faber Floor of the Science & Engineering Library.  This curated selection of Amey's artwork serves as a poignant tribute to Bill's life and work, highlighting the intersection of art and science. Titled "Big Questions: Astronomer Father/Artist Daughter," the exhibit will be open for viewing through June 18.

We hope you thoroughly enjoy perusing the latest edition of our newsletter and engaging with the ongoing activities and exhibitions here at the University library.




The Modern Library: An interview with Annette Marines, Librarian for Arts and Humanities

By Joop Rubens, Managing Director of Development for the Library and Social Sciences, and Liz White, Assistant Director of Development for the Library

JR: So Annette, how long have you worked for the library?  

AM: This will be my 22nd year. I also worked for the UC Santa Barbara library for almost a year when I was a student there.

Annette Marines in yellow poncho holding basket of flowers
Annette Marines, Librarian for Arts and Humanities (Photo by Amy Moon O-S)

JR: When you were at Santa Barbara working in the library did you know that you wanted to pursue a career in the library?

AM: That job, which I started the summer before my senior year, was when I first became aware of library work and found out there was a masters degree in library science. I started using libraries in college, and when it came time to look for a job, I went to the library almost as a reflex.  It was kismet that I had just completed my application as a department manager walked in to collect student applications to review; I think I said, “will you take my application?” She nodded and walked out with a pile of applications. I made the cut!  

My job was in a department called cataloging and receiving; what is now called metadata services here at UCSC. I really loved that job. I remember once carting a fully loaded truck of early 20th century classical records across campus; it was very heavy! I was trained to identify metadata in books and catalog records and went on to catalog books or see if other libraries had cataloged books ahead of our library’s backlog. This work was a cost savings to the library because original cataloging done by librarians was more cost intensive. Through that job I came to understand the wide variety of books that a university library can hold, including art books, government publications and series, foreign books, books from other eras, just about anything on any subject.  My supervisor was very encouraging, often giving me challenging tasks and then saying, “I knew you could do it!” That combination of positive reinforcement and the excitement of seeing books that were new to me and knowing that my work would go into the actual catalog that patrons searched is what probably led me down the library path. 

JR: When you did your graduate degree, do you feel like they taught you well to be prepared for the changes that were about to come? Did they teach you the way the libraries used to be, or were they looking to the future?

AM: I think I was in library school at an awkward time; we were in the midst of a societal shift in communication but the internet had not yet taken over. I bought my first computer and started an internet account when I started library school. The curriculum was still pretty traditional and centered on management, information retrieval, and public services. That said, there were larger forces we contended with that I might consider extensions of my education: We were one of the first cohorts to go online, but back then it meant students from the satellite school at Cal State Fullerton attended our in-person classes remotely. The program is now fully online. So I was introduced to many ideas and principles that can be crosswalked to today’s context, even if they don’t directly correlate. 

I remember a couple of things that were going on at the time: one was that the San Jose State library was in the middle of plans to combine with the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. public library while I was a student. The project was the first of its kind and as students we felt there were many unanswered questions about the plan.

JR: Was that successful, that hybrid library?

AM: Yeah, it still exists today. It sits on the site of our former library school building, which was demolished while I was still in the program and our program offices and classrooms were relocated across campus to portables. So it was a big change. The library directors were trying something new and innovative without having answered all the questions first; and this was mind shifting to me, even if I was still a little skeptical. 

The other thing that was happening was that some library programs were dropping the word “library” in favor of just information science or just “i, ” as in iSchool. That ruffled some feathers among students.

I worked at the Watsonville Public Library while in library school and at that time the library director there came up with a slogan that they still use to this day: Gather, Learn, and Celebrate. And I remember thinking, “celebrate, that sounds really loud.” But this shattered my idea of the library as a quiet place full of books and really inspired me to think of libraries as community gathering places. 

JR: It sounds like there was a trend to make more room for terms like “access” and “information” and that it was recognized that change was happening. It would likely be interesting for you to compare what studying for a library degree now looks like versus when you were in school.

AM: I've talked to people as they were going through their library graduate programs over the years and the programs and course offerings sound better; more interesting and relevant. I think I was in school during a real transition period. We recognized that things were moving in a certain direction, but none of us really knew the extent of the changes that were about to come. We were talking about natural language as the next innovation in search and I think to a certain extent perhaps ChatGPT fits that bill, 20+ years later.

JR: What is your current title, and can you describe your job?

AM: I am the Arts and Humanities Librarian. 

My job is multi-faceted and the areas I focus on can change depending on the library’s strategic plans or from listening to users to learn what unmet needs they might be experiencing. I generally focus on teaching support, and specifically on users from departments in the divisions of arts and humanities. This includes faculty, graduate students, or undergraduate students. My colleagues in the Learning, Research, and Engagement (LRE) department and I are constantly learning new things about our users. We also stay up to date on advancements in information and critical literacy as well as diversity, equity, and inclusion and then design services that take these shifting skill sets and approaches into account. For instance, with graduate students, a pattern that often comes up is struggles with time management. For undergraduates, lacking a sense of belonging is a common issue that we’re working to understand and address better.

JR: Can you give me some more examples? For instance, when you say time management is in need, how do you assess that? Have you had graduate students come up to you, have you noticed that, OK well, they're not managing their time well and I could help?

AM: We’re taking what we hear from the interviews or focus groups we conduct and prioritizing what stands out as important or connected to resources or tools that we have a hunch will help. Time management is interesting because who isn’t affected by time constraints? It’s a very relatable topic. For graduate students it can tip the scales in the work-life balance and lead to stress or worse. So, we offer workshops on Zotero, a bibliographic management tool. The idea behind Zotero is to get ahead of disorganized research with their handy and free tool. Though, recently my colleague Wynn Tranfield, a STEM Librarian, and I tried something more enterprising with a Time Management workshop adapted to this population’s needs. We invited graduate students from different levels to participate as panelists, to share their unique yet highly relatable experiences. We were very excited to try a workshop format that incorporated graduate student voices because just hearing about new tools doesn’t necessarily address the bigger issue of struggling with time constraints and the resulting stress. 

The struggles of undergraduates, especially average students, are really close to my heart; that was my experience as an undergrad in a nutshell. I interviewed a few students who were in senior level courses and heard the ways students attributed their struggles with writing research papers to their own poor habits. Their descriptions of themselves felt very self depreciative. As educators we know that the hidden curriculum–the insider knowledge of academics–can be a barrier to a student who is trying to grasp what an assignment might be asking them to do. This is especially challenging for students from first-generation backgrounds. And you know, we're kind of not doing our job right if our students enter the workforce thinking that they’re bad at doing things. 

It has been very enlightening to interview students and hear about their processes and what they struggle with. I mean, it never felt right to teach a class that consisted of demonstrating a perfect search, but librarians can sometimes get boxed into this because that’s what many faculty still think we do. For me, it’s sort of impossible to go back to this. I’ve been experimenting with new approaches and developing tools with the goal of building in more context. The idea is that more context can shift the equity imbalance, especially for first generation and transfer students. The faculty I’ve worked with have been very receptive to my ideas, which  still  center on strong keywords and effective searches. 

JR: How do you help students to get better at coming up with keywords so that their searches are more efficient?

AM: At the moment, I’m piloting online homework paired with a follow up visit to the classroom. Students are tasked to learn-try-reflect while developing keywords, making sense of scholarly or primary sources and biases, and then searching in databases. Each of these concepts is addressed with a video overview of the strategy or concept, a chance to apply their new skill or thinking, and then reflecting on what has shifted for them and how they can build on this information. It’s been exciting to see lightbulbs go off as students respond to these questions. 

I’m also using the homework as an opportunity to check in on students by asking them to respond to the question, “What's something you'd like me to know about you and your prior experience using any library that might help me understand you as a [history] student better?” The responses have varied, but I’m heartened by how much students have opened up for this optional question, and seem to want to share about themselves. They open up about wanting to work in a library, that they are transfer students, they wish they would’ve learned the lessons from the homework sooner, or that they have a disability that makes things difficult. I feel humbled that students are willing to share a little bit about themselves and I’m a better teacher because of this.

JR: I always thought you just worked directly with faculty. I didn't realize how closely you work with students.

AM: Working with students has been a part of my job since I started here. When I transitioned to the role of divisional liaison, though, this was initially very much centered on faculty needs. During that time I worked with Aaron Zachmeier (Assistant Director for Instructional Design and Development) to develop a tool to help students cite in a consistent manner with a checklist. This was an independent project in which Aaron and I worked kind of like consultants (without clients!) on a hunch: research assignments had unstated expectations and, because of this, students might not meet these expectations. It was a humane approach to thinking about plagiarism and we considered both the faculty and student perspectives. I tend to gravitate toward holistic approaches when thinking about problems; this has always interested me. So while the outcomes of my current project focus on students, faculty play an important role in this work as well.

JR: So what do you like the best about your job?

AM: That’s a really hard question to answer, like asking a parent to say who their favorite child is. I can think of a lot of favorite moments or accomplishments that I’m proud of, but I can’t think of what I like best about the job. I guess I have enjoyed pursuing new ideas and developing them into projects, whether it’s on my own or in collaboration with others. There’s so much exciting energy in the early phases; as projects progress they may become more challenging, but this can still be rewarding. I’ve been lucky to be able to pursue ideas that go on to become successful tools or workshops or programs. Sometimes it’s just the process you went through or getting to know people better as part of that work that makes it all worthwhile.


Designing the digital user experience to meet research needs - Meet Jessica Waggoner

By Sandra Messick

Jessica Waggoner and her student Kiara Winslow sitting in front of the McHenry Library sign
Jessica Waggoner, user experience librarian, and student worker, Kiara Winslow, 4th year, Cognitive Science and Computer Science double major.


Jessica Waggoner knows the UC Santa Cruz libraries inside and out. She first started using them when she was an undergraduate majoring in legal studies with a philosophy minor (Kresge 2003). Today, as UC Santa Cruz’s user experience librarian she’s on the other side, ensuring students and faculty can easily access resources they need to be successful in their classes, push the boundaries of research and create new knowledge.

Academic librarians play an essential role in helping community members find and access information. As resources have expanded from tactile pieces—mainly books, magazines, journals and microfiche—to digital resources, new fields have emerged in library science. “There’s always going to be key physical pieces and research that are important to house,” Waggoner explained. “But a lot of things are published only online now. So as more of the information has moved online, the role of the library has changed as well to connecting folks to that digital information and also retrieving it for them.”

With that change comes the need for new job skills. “It's an important component of librarianship now to understand digital information in terms of databases and how databases are designed,” Waggoner said. “We also need to understand information-seeking behavior. This is a key part of my job. It's not just what collections we are providing access to, but are we doing that in a way that makes sense to the people that need to use our tools and interfaces to find that information? So, to that end, a lot of my work actually involves user research.”

For 15 years, Waggoner has worked at the UC Santa Cruz Library, but she almost went down another path. She majored in legal studies because she wanted to be a lawyer. That changed when Waggoner went into the professional world and worked as a paralegal. Looking back on a field study she did at the Santa Cruz County Law Library as an undergraduate, Waggoner realized what she really liked. “That was my first time working in a library,” said Waggoner. “I experienced this great mix of helping professional attorneys who would come in and need to do legal research, and also people representing themselves or filing their own claim who didn’t have experience with the law. What I really loved was helping people with their research. I just love doing research.”

Waggoner started working at the University Library as the government collections coordinator and then moved to emerging library technologies. She designed and developed multimedia, textual, and programmatic content for digital library systems. When she was getting her master’s in library & information science at the University of British Columbia, Waggoner got her first exposure to coding, HTML, and CSS. A few years later, she enrolled in the Master of Education, Instructional Technologies program at San Francisco State University. That’s where she went deeper into coding. “​​I took courses in more advanced CSS and also got introduced to JavaScript as part of instructional technologies and designing instructional systems.”

In 2013, Waggoner was hired in the Digital Initiatives department as the project manager and web services librarian, one of five librarians in the department. “I found myself working with the staff creating web content to think about what the needs were of the users—the students, the staff, the faculty—coming to a webpage to do research or to learn about a library service… to make sure their pages and content really met those users’ needs.” 

In 2021, she moved to the Learning, Research and Engagement department. Waggoner has three undergraduates working with her, two user experience assistants and a web designer assistant. She says library users benefit substantially from their work because students today experience the world differently than almost every other generation before them. “When they use tools like TikTok or Amazon, those are shaping their behaviors, how they engage with the digital world, their expectations and the language that's meaningful to them when they're using a user interface. User interface can no longer be a static thing.”

Together, the team connects directly with students and faculty. Through interviews, they ask questions and observe how interviewees conduct searches and the words they use when discussing their online experience. “​​That helps us then come back and look at our own tools and services and design them in a way that meets the user needs. We are prioritizing our work based on what their needs are rather than what sounds exciting to me at the moment.”

Most of Waggoner’s student workers are planning to go into user experience and interface work professionally. Many are cognitive science majors interested in human-computer interaction. “Their coursework really prepares them for that and then through working with me, they have additional experiences applying what they've learned in a professional environment.” 

The assistants learn specific job-related skills and techniques, such as conducting usability studies and literature reviews, thematic analysis, user interface design, and recommendation implementation. They also gain valuable collaborative skills, including explaining their design, giving meaningful critiques and feedback, and asking questions to get the information needed to implement someone else’s vision. 

Over her more than two decades at the University Library, the thing Waggoner is most proud of isn’t a specific webpage or user interface she designed and implemented. “Seeing my students both engage in the research and then come up with a design that really speaks to the user needs and is much more usable than our current web content is what I'm most proud of in this work.”


Milestone land acknowledgement event brings campus, local tribe and community members together

By Grace Stetson

As the University of California, Santa Cruz looks to expand its community reach, it also aims to harken back to the land’s rich history, and how that history has not been given its proper recognition.

On Wednesday, April 12, the campus will host its first Land Acknowledgment event, recognizing the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band and its place in the local history of the land and the creation of UC Santa Cruz. The event will aim to answer the community’s questions about land acknowledgments, and the importance of such events moving forward.

Hosted both online and in person beginning at 3 p.m. at Stevenson Event Center, UC Santa Cruz’s own Community Archivist Dr. Rebecca Hernandez will be joined by Amah Mutsun Tribal Band Chairman Valentin Lopez and tribal member Alexii Sigona to discuss more about the acknowledgement and the relationship between the two groups.

“I really wanted to give the opportunity to the tribe to speak for themselves,” said Hernandez. “They are the experts; they are the people who really should be talking about it and sharing about their history.”

Rebecca Hernandez
Rebecca Hernandez is the university’s first community archivist.

Before taking on the role as the community archivist in January 2022, Hernandez was previously the director of the campus’s American Indian Resource Center. Through that role and others in the community — including her work with the Museum of Art and History board, the Latino Affairs Commission, and Rise Together through the Community Foundation Santa Cruz County — Hernandez has been at the forefront of relationship building, making her role all the more all-encompassing.

“Community archivists are very unique roles, not just on our campus but in general — they are a fairly new phenomenon,” she said. “Essentially our role is to interrogate and contemplate what archives are meant to be, why they were started, and determine how we can do a better job of collecting materials that reflect the community.”

Santa Cruz is a rich environment for that role, Hernandez explained. The land was “discovered” by Spanish explorer Don Gaspar de Portola in 1769, who named the San Lorenzo river in honor of Saint Lawrence and the rolling hills above the river Santa Cruz, to reflect the “holy cross.” Over the next 100 years, Santa Cruz garnered a mission, the Spanish pueblo of Villa de Branciforte, and became one of the 27 original counties in the state after California was granted statehood in 1850. Santa Cruz was incorporated first as a town in 1866, and received its first charter as a city in 1876.

But that neatly packaged history is only part of the Santa Cruz we know today, said Hernandez. In starting her role as the community archivist, she has gone out countywide to discuss what the archive could look like with members of the community, ranging from organization leaders like the Watsonville Film Festival and Senderos to UC Santa Cruz professors.

“In some cases, the conversations were very personal. We talked about all the things that can make it challenging to bridge the relationship between the university and the community, and vice versa,” she said. “That opened a lot of doors for us to go out and meet more people…it was really beautiful and gave us a chance to determine next steps.”

Rebecca Hernandez  and Tribal Band Chairman Valentin Lopez
Rebecca Hernandez and Tribal Band Chairman Valentin Lopez

The Community Archive focuses on three components in its work:

  1. To share resources with the community
  2. To serve as a catalyst for community wide dialogue about the history of the county
  3. To develop meaningful experiential learning opportunities for students

Lopez has been the Chairman for the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band since 2003, and has been good friends with Hernandez and a collaborator with the American Indian Resource Center since 2009. Hernandez said that her first priority was to start with acknowledging indigenous peoples from the start, seeing as how “we benefit from being on their land, and working in their city.”

Lopez said that the original indigenous peoples of Santa Cruz, similar to many parts of the U.S., have been “ignored, forgotten and erased from history,” making this land acknowledgement all the more important.

“There are approximately eight identified tribes in the greater Santa Cruz area that spoke the Awaswas language, and there are no known survivors of the descendants of the Awaswas speakers,” Lopez said, noting that the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band are representing the Awaswas speaking tribes. “That has a great impact on our tribe…it’s our responsibility to restore these lands and work to ensure we’re never forgotten.”

The Community Archiving Program has also attained its first acquisition separate from this event, recently receiving materials from the Japanese American Citizens League. These two acquisitions will be just the start of what’s to come.

“The history of the community evolves as we evolve, and we are witnesses of change,” Hernandez said. “It’s all about 50 years from now, 100 years from now, 200 years from now — what do we want people to know about us? The Community Archiving Program is meant to preserve those moments in time.”


New CART Exhibitions Opening June 15th

three images from the new exhibit


The Elisabeth Remak-Honnef Center for Archival Research and Training (CART) is pleased to announce the opening of this year’s exhibitions curated by the 2022-2023 graduate fellows. These two exhibitions feature the Ingeborg Gerdes Photographs and Papers, as well as the Florence Wyckoff Papers, the William H. Friedland Papers, the William MacKenzie Papers, and the California Farm Research and Legislative Committee Records.

Gerdes photograph woman leaving

Ingeborg Gerdes in Process: The Making of an Artist, curated by Yulia Gilich, features materials from the newly acquired collection of Ingeborg Gerdes

Photographs and Papers. The vast collection reflects the legacy of artist Ingeborg Gerdes, including her meticulous craftsmanship and prolific photographic career, momentous personal life, and commitment to teaching. Born in Germany in 1938, Gerdes was known for photographing her travels through the American West among other locales, and taught at UC Santa Cruz for over two decades. The collection also offers a glimpse of the history of photography as a medium, which dramatically changed over the course of Gerdes’s life and career. Containing exhibition prints, film negatives, work prints, contact sheets, and slides, the exhibit traces Gerdes’s photographic trajectory from black and white film to color, and later, to digital photography.

California Farm Reporter photo

Beyond the Ivory Tower: Community engagement, education, and organizing in California’s Central Coast, curated by Riley Collins, Carrie Hamilton, Brittney Jimenez, and Summer Sullivan, tells a story about different approaches for eliciting social change in California’s Central Coast and beyond. While the large-scale, vegetable-dominant agriculture of the region has led to prosperity for some, it has resulted in unjust conditions for others. The area’s farm workers, in particular, have for decades faced numerous challenges related to immigration, labor, race and ethnicity, and education. The collections featured in this exhibition demonstrate that there are many avenues for activism both in and outside of academia, and are united around a goal of community-oriented social change for underrepresented groups, particularly the working class and immigrants. Central to the theories of change presented in each collection is the power of education as a public and social good.

Both exhibits are on view from June 15th to December 8th, 2023, in the Third Floor Gallery of McHenry Library at UC Santa Cruz.


new exhibit in UCSC Dead Central

The Thread that Runs so True: Archival Connections of the Grateful Dead

Since their start in the 1960s, the American band known as the Grateful Dead showed immense capacity for creating a sense of radical welcome, connecting with fans, fellow musicians, and many

others who shared their interest in the creative possibilities of experimentation and improvisation. The Thread that Runs so True draws on a variety of archival collections at UC Santa Cruz to explore the many threads running between the Grateful Dead and other artists, thinkers, and supporters who also have left behind archival traces within the archives held at UC Santa Cruz.

At UC Santa Cruz's University Library, the band’s papers keep company with musical scores of avant-garde composers, recorded interviews of jazz and rock innovators, photographs and papers of Black Panther Party members, scholarly studies on sound, and even the writings of a certain gonzo journalist. A look into some of these other archives reveals the threads that run between the Grateful Dead and a diversity of artists, authors, journalists, and activists whose archives also have their homes at UC Santa Cruz today. 

Located in Dead Central, on the main level of McHenry Library. Open during regular library hours.


"Big Questions: Astronomer Father and Artist Daughter" Exhibit in memory of late UCSC astronomer and astrophysicist on display at Science and Engineering Library

By Haneen Zain

Bill Mathews began working at UC Santa Cruz in 1970; 52 years later, he is remembered by his students, friends, and colleagues as a dedicated and dynamic astronomer and mentor. An inspiration and friend of many, Bill passed away in September 2021.

Amey Mathews
Amey Mathews hands out notepads made out of her father’s old notes to friends and family at a private reception of her art installation.

His daughter, Amey Mathews —an artist and yoga instructor—took ownership of thousands of pages of Bill’s old notes, covered in calculations and commentary. Amey began weaving portraits of her father into and over the notes, drawing out Bill’s presence on the pages.

The notes—typically dense calculations written on 8½-by-11-inch paper, galactic images, or even Post-its—gradually evolved into a most unique kind of canvas.

A curated selection of Amey’s work currently lives on the Sandra M. Faber Floor (third floor) of the Science and Engineering Library at UC Santa Cruz and is open to all. Amey says she is grateful to have this space dedicated to her father.

“I’m so thrilled to have this work here,” Amey said at a private reception for the exhibit. “I really love having it here at the library, I love having it here on campus, and I love having it in a place of contemplation and active thinking and learning.”

The exhibit is entitled “Big Questions: Astronomer Father/Artist Daughter” and will remain on display through Spring quarter.

“All of these are notes that my dad took not very many feet from here for 50-plus years,” Amey said at the Science and Engineering Library. “So it feels really meaningful to share him and his work in this context and in this place.”

Bill contributed fundamental knowledge to understanding some of the most energetic phenomena in the universe. He employed atomic physics and hydrodynamics to understand luminous

Amey Mathews artwork
Portraits of Bill Mathews drawn on a note page and galactic image.

interstellar gas clouds—glowing nebulae—that formed because of phenomena such as the remnants of dying stars in the galaxy and quasars expelling energetic gasses.

His early work focused on how dust forms in galactic gas clouds, and by the 1970s, his work had advanced our fundamental understanding of various types of glowing nebulae.

His legacy includes more than 200 publications in professional journals and conference proceedings. In addition to his work in the Astronomy and Astrophysics Department, Bill had a lifelong interest in music and taught a popular course at UCSC on the physics of music.

“He was an enthusiastic person about life, about science, and about his family—he just had a lot of enthusiasm,” Amey said. “I started coming out to my art space and sitting with all of these papers, my memory of him, my love for him, and his love of this subject—it was such a meaningful part of his life.”

Bill is also remembered by The Bill Mathews Fund for Excellence in Astronomy and Astrophysics which was established by Cynthia Mathews to support current graduate students and attract outstanding graduate student candidates to the department. Cynthia—former Santa Cruz mayor, long-term city council member, and Santa Cruz Planned Parenthood co-founder—was married to Bill for 57 years.

The fund supports graduate program fellowships, individual graduate student research programs, travel funds for graduate students to attend meetings and deliver talks, and participation in collaborations.

“It was clear he always wanted this to happen,” Cynthia said. “Bill’s career in astronomy and astrophysics was enormously rewarding to him. He was grateful to work in such a continually exciting field with wonderful colleagues; he wanted to invest in future generations of astronomers to carry on.”

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Contributors: Elizabeth Cowell, Joop Rubens, Liz White, Linda Hunt, Alix Norton, Grace Stetson, Haneen Zain, and Sandra Messick

Production: Linda Hunt

Copyediting: Greg Careaga

Photography: Carolyn Lagattuta, Amy Moon O-S, Joop Rubens, Linus Bangert and Linda Hunt