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College of Arts and Sciences

Ray Jayawardhana

Harold Tanner Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Professor of Astronomy




Department and Program Affiliations:


Academic focus:

Origins, evolution and diversity of planets, brown dwarfs and stars

Current research projects: 

Spectroscopy of transiting exoplanets, rotational evolution of young brown dwarfs

Previous positions:

  • Dean of Science and Professor of Physics & Astronomy, York University
  • Associate Professor, Professor, Canada Research Chair in Observational Astrophysics and Senior Advisor to the President on Science Engagement, University of Toronto
  • Assistant Professor, University of Michigan
  • Miller Research Fellow, University of California, Berkeley

Academic background:

  • Ph.D., Astronomy, Harvard University
  • B.S., Astronomy and physics, Yale University

Last book read:

“Property: Stories Between Two Novellas” by Lionel Shriver 

In your own time/when not working:

Traveling, hiking, jogging, reading, writing, watching and learning to play tennis, enjoying port (preferably vintage) and cheese (stinkier the better)

What most excites you about Cornell:

The vibrant intellectual community and the great outdoors

Twitter handle: