Having a room like the planetarium to teach in creates a wonderful learning environment. The students come in excited and ready to learn. The room helps to foster that.

Kent Montgomery, Ph.D.
Department Head and Associate Professor, Associate Dean

  • Faculty
College of Science and Engineering
Kent Montgomery, Ph.D.
Contact Kent
AG/ET 116C
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College of Science and Engineering

He doesn't just study the sky. He flies in it. Dr. Kent Montgomery is a certified pilot and trained physicist who brings his love of the universe to A&M-Commerce. He's known for his archeoastronomy course, where students learn how ancient civilizations followed the moon and the stars. At the end of the course, he journeys with them to Chaco Canyon, where artificial light is void and the night shines with brilliance. But Montgomery doesn't stop there. He's also taken A&M-Commerce students to Europe. We'll just have to wait and see where his next adventure will be.

A Conversation with Dr. Montgomery

What makes A&M-Commerce unique?

In the Department of Physics and Astronomy, upper-level undergraduate students are encouraged to do research, which is only reserved for graduate students in many schools.

Why would you encourage a student to attend A&M-Commerce?

I feel that A&M-Commerce is an excellent place to start your educational career. The school is just the right size so that the faculty still directly interact with the undergraduates and are truly interested in their success but not too small that you only have limited programs.

Tell us about a project you are working on or have completed.

I built my own airplane, which has been flying since 2011. It took me eight years to complete, but it was my favorite and most-challenging project.

Educational Background

Academic Positions

  • Department Head, Physics and Astronomy, Texas A&M University-Commerce, 2018-present
  • Interim Department Head, Physics and Astronomy, 2017-2018
  • Planetarium Director and Professional Staff, A&M-Commerce, 2005-2017
  • Planetarium Director and Professor, Young Harris College, 1995-2005
  • Instructor, Boston University, 1990-1994
  • Instructor, Boston University, 1990-1994
  • High School Teacher, Terry High School, 1987-1988

Research Interests

  • Exoplanet transits
  • Asteroid lightcurves

Awards and Honors

  • Teaching Excellence Award, A&M-Commerce, 2011
  • Teaching Excellence Award, A&M-Commerce, 2010
  • Paul W. Barrus award for Teaching Excellence, A&M-Commerce, 2010

Selected Publications

  • Fuller, K., Sanchez, C., and Montgomery, K., “Rotational Periods and Lightcurves of Four Asteroids,” 2019, Minor Planet Bul., 46-1, 1-2.
  • Baxter, N., Vent, A., Montgomery, K., Davis, C., Cantu, S. and Lyons, V., “Lightcurves and Rotational Periods of Five Main Belt Asteroids,” 2019, Minor Planet Bul., 46-2, 111-114.
  • Cantu, S., Kozdon, J., Montgomery, K. and Lyons, V., “Lightcurves of Asteroids 800 Kressmania, 3494 Purple Mountain and 25891 2000 WK9,”
    2016, Minor Planet Bul., 43-3, 210-212.
  • Kozdon, J., Cantu, S. and Montgomery, K., “Lightcurves of Asteroids 891 Gunhild, and 1614 Goldschmidt,” 2016, Minor Planet Bul., 43-2, 171.

Related News

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TAMUC Professor Discusses James Webb Space Telescope Images

Kent Montgomery, Ph.D., who serves as associate professor and head of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at A&M-Commerce, is featured on a recent episode of The Blacklands Café, a radio program hosted on 88.9 KETR. Montgomery discussed the first images released from the James Webb Space Telescope and the telescope’s impact on researchers’ understanding […]
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A&M-Commerce Society of Physics Students Receive National Recognition

The A&M-Commerce chapter of the Society of Physics Students (SPS) won an Outstanding Chapter Award from the organization’s national office. The designation is the highest level of distinction, with less than 15% of the organization’s chapters receiving the title. The local chapter has been a Distinguished Chapter for the past six years consecutively. The A&M-Commerce […]
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A&M-Commerce Planetarium & Observatory Offer the Universe to Students and Community

The Planetarium and the Observatory at Texas A&M University-Commerce offer an astronomical amount of knowledge to students and the community. Located on the first floor of the McFarland Science Building, the Planetarium features a Digistar 5 all-digital projection system and 87 reclined seats within a 40-foot dome, surrounding viewers in a space environment filled with […]
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