Cindy Bither
Administrative Assistant
P: (540) 464-7207
F: (540) 464-7443

111 Smith Hall
Lexington, VA 24450

2013-14 a Busy Year for Physics Society

FullTextImage/img/@altVisiting the Naval Surface Warfare Center were (from left) Nick Mahin ’15, Dylan Bolden ’15, Scott Cox ’16, Jack Fox ’17, Elliott Matthews ’14, Thayer Meyer ’17, Evan Richey ’17, and Emma Nobile ’17. – Photo courtesy of Lt. Col. Gregory Topasna.

LEXINGTON, Va., June 20, 2014 – The VMI chapter of the Society of Physics Students had an active 2013-14 academic year.

Among the group’s activities was a visit to the Udvar-Hazy National Air and Space Museum in Chantilly, Va. The cadets watched two IMAX presentations, toured the museum, and met one of the Tuskegee Airmen. The Tuskegee Airmen were the first African-American U.S. military pilots, who fought during World War II and trained near Tuskegee, Ala.

On a second trip, VMI cadets studying physics were invited to visit the Naval Surface Warfare Center in Dahlgren, Va. While at the facility, the cadets toured the center’s labs and heard from the scientists and engineers about the type of work they do and the research they engage in. Cadets toured the nanomaterials fabrication and characterization lab, the reverberation and anechoic chambers, and the HERO – hazards of electromagnetic radiation to ordnance – lab. They also saw a display of naval guns at the testing range.

The chapter’s on-post activities included sci-fi movie nights and tutoring sessions for physics and other STEM majors. The cadets also participate in, and have hosted, SPS zone meetings, wherein students from Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C., present the results of their undergraduate research.

Membership in the Society of Physics Students through the VMI chapter is open to any cadet interested in physics. Cadets who have excelled in physics may be eligible for membership in the Sigma Pi Sigma National Physics Honor Society, housed within the Society of Physics Students. Sigma Pi Sigma encourages interest in physics among students, promotes an attitude of service towards fellow students, colleagues, and the public, and provides fellowship among students who have excelled in physics. Both societies operate within the American Institute of Physics.

For more information about the Society of Physics Students and the Sigma Pi Sigma National Physics Honors Society, contact Lt. Col. Gregory Topasna, the VMI chapter adviser.