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Message from the Department Chair

The challenges of teaching and performing science in the 21st century cannot be understated, but the students, faculty and staff of the department continue their work with dedication and enthusiasm.

After undergoing extensive renovations the department now has new state-of-the-art, collaborative laboratories and classrooms. This has allowed the teaching faculty to explore and apply innovative techniques and enhance the learning experience of the students. The recently-adopted physics and astronomy curriculum allows for more flexibility and includes a study abroad option.

New workshop-style advanced courses have been successfully offered, as well. In addition, the department engages in intense outreach and recruiting activities, such as visiting high schools in the area. These developments have resulted in historically high enrollment for the past two years with a total of 53 student currently pursuing degrees in physics and astronomy.

The importance and the level of service in courses has also been enhanced as the number of students needing science education increases.

The department maintains its long tradition of engaging the students in meaningful research. Many students have presented their work at conferences, or have coauthored peer-reviewed articles. A new dimension to research activities has been the foundation of a student-led, spacr physics collaboration, which promotes the excitement of inquiry-based learning.

The department has benefited from the constructionof the new STEM building with an allocated biophysics laboratory and an astronomy observation deck.

Dr. Athanasios Petridis
Drake University

To download the full newsletter; Physics and Astronomy Newsletter Fall 2017

Articles include:

Year in Review
Humans of Harvey Ingham
The Island of MISSFIT Toys
One Time at Physics Camp
Observing the Observers
How Cassini propagated the search for extraterrestrial life
DIY Physics Experiment
The Physics Trifecta

To donate to the department, use this link.

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