Angie Triplett watches Jeremy Hohertz demonstrate that an orthogonal torque can rotate an angular momentum
Since 1994, our department has had a site grant for
Research Experience for Undergraduates
from the National Science Foundation. Through this and other grants, we employ eight to
ten undergraduates each summer to conduct original research
under the supervision of our faculty.
In a recent ten-year period, members of the department received
individual research and instrumentation grants totalling more than half a million
dollars from sources including the National Science
Foundation, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the National Aeronautics and
Space Administration, the Navy, the Petroleum Research Fund, and Research Corporation.
In a recent ten year period, forty Wooster physics majors and student researchers
co-authored papers in refereed journals; thirteen of these student co-authors were women.
These journals includee American Journal of Physics, Scientific American, Journal of
Statistical Physics, Journal of Chemical Physics, Physics Letters A, Physical Review E,
International Journal of Thermophysics, and Physical Review Letters.
This recognition is not uncommon at Wooster where every senior in every department completes a yearlong
senior thesis project.
In the last decade, our majors have had summer research experiences at colleges and universities
like Cornell, Georgia Tech, and Rennsselaer, and spent academic semesters at Oak
Ridge National Lab, Argonne National Lab, and Caltech's Jet Propulsion Lab.
Recently, one of our majors spent a summer at CERN
in Geneva, Switzerland, while another of our majors spent a summer at Fermilab.
Most of our majors continue in graduate programs, and Wooster's Physics
Department ranks highly in the number of its graduates who obtain the Ph.D. One
study of 867 undergraduate institutions nationwide ranked our natural science
department graduates 6th in the number of Ph.D.'s annually, with Physics in the
top 3% nationally.
Our recent majors have succeeded in graduate school at places like Duke,
Case Western, Georgia Tech, Kent State, Cornell, The University of Michigan,
The University of Maryland at College Park, The University of Southern California, and the University of California at Berkeley.
We have taught the hardware and software of computer interfacing since they first
appeared in the 1970s. Today, Macintosh computers are commonly used to control
experiments, to acquire and analyze data, and to perform
Taylor Hall, the renovated home
of Physics, Mathematics, and Computer Science, contains a state-of-the-art, computer-based
laboratory for introductory physics.
A collegial atmosphere encourages
frequent, informal discussion between students and faculty members outside of the classroom.
Honors and Awards
In 2003, 2007, & 2009, our Physics Club's Outreach Program won
the Marsh White Award from
the Society of Physics Students of the American Institute of Physics.
In both 2007 and 2009 our Outreach Program won national
Blake Lilly Prizes. In both 2008 and 2009, we were named an Outstanding SPS Chapter.
In 1996, 1998, 2003, & 2006, four of our physics majors received
Barry M. Goldwater Scholarships,
the premier undergraduate awards of their type in the fields of mathematics, science and engineering.
From the classes of 2001, 2003, 2007, & 2008, five other of our physics majors received
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowships.
In 2001, 2003, 2003, & 2008 (four of eight consecutive years), a physics major was awarded
Wooster's Notestein Prize for highest scholarship and was selected as
commencement speaker for the graduating class.
In 2003 & 2007, two of our seniors were finalists for the national Apker Award
for outstanding undergraduate achievement in physics.
In 2000, one of our faculty was the recipient of the American Physical Society's prize
for Research in an Undergraduate Institution.
In 1927, one of our graduates
- Arthur Holly Compton -
was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics.
The William F. Harn Professor of Physics.
B.S. at University of Madras (India) in 1970;
M.S. at University of Sussex (Great Britain) in 1972;
Ph.D. at University of Kent at Canterbury (Great Britain) in 1975.
Static and dynamic instabilities in liquid crystals, nonlinear flow effects in liquid crystals.
Victor J. Andrew Professor of Physics, Emeritus.
B.A. at University of South Florida in 1971;
M.A. at University of South Florida in 1972;
Ph.D. at University of Colorado in 1976.
Experimental investigations into critical solution points in binary liquid
mixtures, polymer-solvent systems, and self-organized criticality.
Assistant Professor of Physics.
B.S. at University of Puget Sound in 2003;
M.S., Ph.D. at University of Oregon in 2004, 2010.
Experimental quantum optics.
The Clare Boothe Luce Associate Professor of Physics.
B.A. at Goshen College in 1993;
M.S. at University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill) in 1996;
Ph.D. at University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill) in 1999;
Experimental condensed matter, nanostructures, and optoelectronics.
The Moore Professor of Astronomy.
B.S. at University of Vermont 1978-1982;
Ph.D. at California Institute of Technology 1982-1988.
Nonlinear dynamics, chaos, stochastic resonance, cellular automata, computer visualization.
Assistant Professor of Physics.
B.S. Physics and Mathematics at University of Wisconsin Madison in 1999;
Ph.D. Astronomy and Astrophysics, The Pennsylvania State University in 2005.
Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN), galaxies in which a central supermassive black hole is actively accreting matter from its host galaxy.