Dr. Monika Kress joined the Department of Physics and Astronomy at San Jose State University in August 2004. She has taught undergraduate courses in stellar astrophysics, planet formation, astrobiology, and thermodynamics, and a graduate course on cosmic origins. She has been a co-investigator with the Virtual Planetary Laboratory since 2003, where she conducts research on physics and chemistry of planet formation, meteors and meteorites.
Dr. Kress is the Chair of the Astrobiology Society. She also is a co-investigator of the URSA program, a NASA-funded collaboration with the SETI Institute to support SJSU Undergraduates to do Research at SETI in Astrobiology. Dr. Kress received her PhD in physics (major subject: theoretical astrophysics) from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1997.
From 1997-2000, she was a National Research Council postdoctoral research associate at NASA Ames Research Center. From 2000-2004, she was a postdoctoral research associate with the University of Washington's Center for Astrobiology and Early Evolution. She served on the 2003-2004 Antarctic Search for Meteorites.