Robert Brown and Laura Tartakoff were chosen from a field of 64 nominees as the winners of the Carl F. Wittke Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching. Brown, a physics professor, was described by his nominator as “the epitome of what professors should be and how we should advertise our faculty to the world.” More here.
Robert Brown, Institute Professor in the Physics Department, was named Forman Lecturer for 2006 at Vanderbilt University, a position focused on physics education. He delivered the Forman Lecture at Vanderbilt on March 2 entitled “An Evolutionary Gap in Teaching Introductory Physics: An Intelligent Design?” He also delivered an associated Forman lecture on “A Simple View of MRI, and its Increasingly Rich View of Us and Our Brain,” at Vanderbilt on March 3.
Diana Driscoll received one of seven “Top Prof Awards” from the Mortar Board National College Senior Honor Society Case chapter.
Robert Brown has been named a finalist for the 2006 Cherry National Teaching Award being given by Baylor University.
Three finalists for the Robert Foster Cherry Award for Great Teaching have been chosen from the field of nominees. Each finalist will receive $15,000 and will be invited to present a series of lectures at Baylor University in the fall of 2005. In addition, the home department of the finalists will receive $10,000 to foster the development of pedagogical skills.
The final winner of the Cherry Award, announced in Spring 2006, will receive an award of $200,000, and an additional $25,000 for his or her home department.
This newsletter describes developments in the Physics Department over the last few years.
John Ruhl has been elected a Fellow of the American Physical Society “for his fundamental experimental contributions to the study of the cosmic microwave background radiation.”
Glenn Starkman has been elected a Fellow of the American Physical Society “for his wide-ranging and creative contributions to particle astrophysics, including explorations of the possibility of non-trivial topology in the universe, and uncovering unexpected features in the cosmic microwave background fluctuations at large angular scales.”
Read more here.
Among the American Physical Society’s report of top physics news stories of 2004, as reported in the February 2005 APS news, are the work of Dan Akerib and colleagues at CDMS in producing the world’s best direct detection limit on WIMP dark matter candidates, and the work of Glenn Starkman and colleagues showing that the Universe is at least 25 Gigaparsecs in size. Read more here.
John Ruhl has been appointed by the Polar Research Board (a unit of the National Academies) to a 6-year term as one of the twelve US Representatives (four in each of Life sciences, Geosciences, and Physical Sciences) to SCAR, the international “Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research”. The mission of this organization is noted on its web site: “SCAR is charged with the initiation, promotion and coordination of scientific research in Antarctica. It also provides scientific advice to the Antarctic Treaty System.”
Robert Brown was just awarded the national American Association of Physics Teachers Excellence in Introductory College Physics Teaching Award, the highest award given for introductory physics teaching in the country. As the recipient of the award, he will deliver a lecture at the national AAPT meeting in Sacramento this summer.
Bill Fickinger, Emeritus Professor of Physics, will be awarded the 2004 Robert E. Kennedy Award for Academic Freedom. This prestigious award was established by the Ohio Conference of the American Association of College Professors to recognize individuals who, in a given year or over time, have made significant contributions to the cause of academic freedom.