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SPS News - Spring Awards Due Next Week!
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SPS News Issue 171: March 3, 2020


Spring Awards Due March 15


Do you want to be published as an undergraduate in a peer-reviewed journal? Do you have the best SPS advisor who deserves recognition for all their hard work? Look no further!  SPS Spring Awards can help you with that and more!  Apply by March 15th to be considered for the following awards and publication.

SPS Scholarships

  • Made to undergraduate physics students based on academic performance SPS participation, and additional criteria specific to each scholarship

  • Multiple scholarships available for $2000-$5000

SPS Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Research

  • Provided to students based on exceptional research achievement in any physics-related field
  • Up to $1800 provided for travel and registration to attend one AIP member society professional meeting and $500 honorarium for the student and their SPS chapter

SPS Outstanding Chapter Advisor Award

  • Awarded on the basis of mentorship, student leadership development, support, and encouragement the advisor has provided to the chapter
  • Awarded $5000 divided between the recipient, SPS chapter, and department
  • Their SPS Chapter must have received an Outstanding Chapter Award within the past two years

Submit your research to the Journal of Undergraduate Reports in Physics (JURP)

  • JURP is an annual peer-reviewed undergraduate publication of SPS used as an educational tool for publicly disseminating SPS-related research and programmatic activities.
  • Papers in the areas of pure, applied, computational, and/or theoretical physics and astronomy are eligible for submissi on.



Celebrate Women's History Month with SPS


March is Women’s History Month – check out these quick facts about some amazing women in physics and their accomplishments over the past 100+ years!


1897Isabelle Stone was the first American woman to earn a PhD in Physics studying the conductivity of thin films.  She was also one of the founders of the American Physical Society (APS). Read more here.


1956Chien-Shiung Wu (pictured top) conducted the Wu Experiment, proving that parity is violated by the weak interaction in beta decay and, therefore, is not a conserved quantity. Read more here.


1972 Willie Hobbs Moore earned her PhD in Physics from University of Michigan studying the vibrational analysis of secondary chlorides. She was the first black woman to earn a Physics PhD in the United States. Read more here.


1980 – Geophysicist Deborah Ajakaiye (pictured middle) from Nigeria became the first woman in West Africa to be appointed full professor of physics. Read more here.


1993Ellen Ochoa (pictured bottom) became the first Hispanic woman to go to space, serving a nine-day mission on the Discovery Space Shuttle. Ochoa  has  been to space four times, and she later became director of the NASA Johnson Space Center. Read more here.


2007 – Physicist Ibtesam Badhrees is the first Saudi Arabian woman to become a member of the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN).  Read more here.


National Council Nominations Due March 15


Nominations are being accepted for SPS Zone Councilors for Zones 1, 3, 4, 9, 13, and 14 for three-year terms, Associate Zone Councilors for all 18 zones for one-year terms, and the office of Sigma Pi Sigma President for a two-year term. Visit here if there is someone you’d like to nominate to the National Council!

Nominations will close March 15, 2020. For position descriptions and duties, visit here .


Connect with SPS at Zone Meetings!


Zone meetings bring together students from SPS chapters within geographical zones. They are a fun and effective way for undergraduates to meet other students, present their research, and interact with practicing scientists. Find what zone your chapter is in here.

Upcoming Zone Meetings

Zone 5: March 20-21; High Point University @ High Point, NC

Zone 6: March 25-29; University of Puerto Rico @ Mayaguez, Puerto Rico

Zone 10: March 27-28; Louisiana Tech University @ Ruston, LA

Zone 12: March 27-28; University of Kansas @ Lawrence, KS

Zone 2: March 28; University of Rochester @ Rochester, NY

Zone 3: March 28; New Jersey Institute of Technology @ Newark, NJ

Zone 13: April 2-4; Lamar University @ Beaumont, TX

Zone 7: April 3-4; John Carroll University @ Cleveland, OH

Zone 4: April 10-11; University of Virginia @ Charlottesville, VA

Zone 8: May 2; Millikan University @ Decatur, IL


Seek out current graduate students for advice on grad school!

While using can be great to search for the grad school that best fits you, seeking advice from current grad students is also an important step as you prepare for this next step. Speak with current grad students about their experiences and receive advice on ways to succeed in grad school. Read about SPS & Sigma Pi Sigma alumni experiences and contact them if you want to seek out their mentorship!


Upcoming Scientific Meetings - Students Welcome

APS April Meeting 2020, April 18-21

Regular registration is open until March 27. Meeting info is located here .

OSA CLEO, May 10-15

Early registration closes April 9. Find conference and registration info  here.

ASA 179 Meeting, May 11-15

Preregistration closes April 8. Find meeting information here.

AAS 236 Meeting, May 31 – June 4

Early registration is open through March 10. Conference info is located here.


SPS offers Travel Awards of $300 to members presenting their research at AIP member society meetings. A limited number of awards will be offered. Apply Today!


SPS members attending and reporting on professional physics meetings are eligible to receive $300 as an individual and $250 per person as a chapter in travel reimbursement. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Apply Now!


SPS Featured Jobs

Lehigh Physics Undergraduate Research Program

Department of Physics, Lehigh University


REU Back to the Future Program

South Dakota School of Mines and Technology


Search SPS Jobs

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Questions or assistance? 

Contact us at or 301-209-3007.