University of Minnesota
School of Physics & Astronomy
Home > About > News > Alumni >


Jacob Haqq-Mizra (B.S. Astrophysics)


I worked with Professor Tom Jones and I graduated with my B.S. in astrophysics in 2005.

Public observation nights were always memorable; one fun evening we observed all the planets from Mercury to Uranus. Professor Evan Skillman's course on galaxies was by far my favorite undergraduate course. Even more than the subject matter, I appreciated the informal discussion-based format of the course, which taught me a lot about the role of teaching style in effective communication. I completed my M.S in Meteorology in 2007 and my Ph.D. in Meteorology & Astrobiology in 2010 from Penn State University. I then spent a year as a postdoctoral scholar with the Rock Ethics Institute. My wife, Gina Riggio, and I were married on June 16, 2012 and are happily celebrating our second anniversary! We enjoy our friendship, gourmet cooking, and performing music together with our band. We live in Newark, Delaware with our two cats. I am currently a research scientist with the Blue Marble Space Institute of Science, a non-profit research institute based in Seattle with an interdisciplinary approach to studying the relationship between Earth system science, space exploration, and the future of humanity.