Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Leadership: Susan Nossal

The university’s large introductory physics classes can be daunting to students, especially those who had limited exposure to the discipline in high school. In collaboration with others, Susan Nossal founded the Physics Learning Center 14 years ago to create a welcoming space for these students. The concept began as the Physics Peer Mentor Tutor Program, now the center’s core. Each semester, carefully trained undergraduates and staff members assist more than 150 students, many experiencing challenging circumstances inside and outside the classroom. The students develop confidence not only in physics, but in university life in general. Some go on to become tutors in the program themselves. Nossal sets a warm tone. Her caring demeanor and devotion to social justice foster powerful connections with students who may feel isolated or frustrated. Tenacious and resourceful, she’s grown the center into a forceful vehicle for student success.

Photo: Susan Nossal works on optical calculations with undergraduate students Matthew McAllister and Hanna Khan in a classroom at Chamberlin Hall.

Photo Credit: Jeff Miller

2019 UW Staff Excellence Awards

Thad Walker elected to chair DAMOP

Professor Thad Walker has been elected to be vice-chair of the APS Division of Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics (DAMOP). He will serve as the chair starting in 2021.

UW Cool Science Image Winner – ProtoDUNE Cryostat, Brian Rebel

The corrugated areas in this stainless steel wall will keep welds from breaking as the vessel is cooled to minus 265 degrees Fahrenheit and filled with 135,000 gallons of liquid argon. The container is a prototype for a neutrino detector that would hold more than 3 million gallons of argon in which neutrino collisions with argon atoms could be carefully studied for clues suggesting why our universe is made of matter.

The photo was captured by Professor Brian Rebel while on a trip to CERN.

2019 Cool Science Images

Jack Schneider passes away, April 11th

Former UW-Madison Physics department administrator (1970-1990) passed away on April 11th.  A celebration of Jack’s life will be held on Saturday, June 8, 2019, in Bloomington, Minn.


2019 NDSEG Fellowship Award winners

Graduate students Megan Tabbutt and Aedan Gardill are 2019 National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship Award winners. Both work with Assistant Prof. Shimon Kolkowitz.

Congratulations to Megan and Aedan!