The Cooperman Award honors the memory of former Physics Professor Ed Cooperman. Cinthia Padilla and Danny Orton are this year's recipients, and they will each receive $250.
Cinthia is a junior physics major pursuing her goal of attending graduate school in physics. She is the presi-dent of our very active physics club and a dedicated researcher. For her current project in Josh Smith's lab, she measures scattered light from the optics used in gravitational-wave interferometry. She spent last sum-mer working with an NSF internship on gravitational-wave astronomy in South Korea, and she will expand her research resume this summer with another NSF internship at the renowned research center SRI in Palo Alto.
Danny is a junior physics and math double major. He has a high GPA and is active in research in both dis-ciplines. He is a member of Morty Khakoo's atomic and molecular physics research team and spent last summer working with collaborators at the UFJF in Brazil on low-energy electron scattering experiments. After graduating Danny plans to pursue a PhD in either physics or math.
Eiker-Adams Creativity Award
George Balch receives this year's Eiker-Adams Award for $1,000 for the design and development of new experiments for our introductory modern-physics Physics 227L lab course.
George has developed a high-accuracy, low-cost polarization experiment that shows the properties of polarizer combinations using LEDs and light to frequency converters, replacing an outdated polarization experiment. George is also working to develop a novel fluorescence experiment that will allow measurement of excited state lifetimes of chromium ions in sapphire.
Norman Nitzberg Award
The Norman Nitzberg Award is presented to a physics student for excellence in experimental physics and use of the machine shop or constructing lab related apparatus.
Master's student Joshua Tanner receives an experimental-physics award for being involved in building circuits used for timing and control of research instruments in Morty Khakoo's electron-scattering lab.
Alex Gauf receives an experimental-physics award for single-handedly working an electron-molecule scattering experiment in Morty Khakoo's lab, the results of which have been submitted for publication in Physical Review A.
Robert Kedzie Award
The Robert Kedzie award is for students who have improved their performance in physics courses, and Peter Ho and Cinthia Padilla are this year's recipients and each will receive $500.
Peter is a graduating senior with a double major in physics and math. Peter learned quickly from his initial academic struggles, and his overall grades in both physics and math have significantly improved. In addi-tion to his coursework for both majors, Peter has volunteered his time as the past Interclub Council Representative for the Math Club and has conducted research on the mathematics of Einstein's General Relativity under the supervision of Bogdan Suceava and on the Quantum Vacuum under the supervision of Alfonso Agnew in Math, and on electron collisions in atomic physics under the supervision of Morty Khakoo in Physics. Following graduation, Peter plans to pursue a doctoral degree in physics or mathematics.
Cinthia is a junior physics major. After initial struggles with upper-division courses, Cinthia has improved her performance even though she assumed a variety of new duties, including leadership in the physics club and participation in the McNair Scholars program.
Fabian Magana-Sandoval is this year's recipient of the Wolfram Award. This award is based on nominations and input from faculty across the college and selected by the dean's office and is a lifetime copy of the symbolic-algebra programming system Mathematica from Wolfram Research.
Fabian is an outstanding student in several of our upper-division courses, as well as being an active research student in the department. In both his academic and research pursuits he has demonstrated a clear interest in, and exceptional understanding of, the use of computers in the study of physical systems, including Mathematica. Fabian was the top student in Dr. Leigh Hargreaves' computational physics course last spring and was exceptionally strong in the Mathematica section of the course, scoring 100% on his midterm exam. Over the past year Fabian has developed extensive data acquisition and analysis software for his research with Prof. Josh Smith, characterizing defects in optical components used in gravitational-wave detectors. Fabian is also currently serving as secretary of the physics club.