My name is Justin Reeder and I am from the awesome Midwestern state of Wisconsin where Brett Farve, Frozen Tundra, and Cheese Curds are all words of common knowledge. I am a senior attending the University of Wisconsin--Platteville majoring in Engineering Physics. Once I complete my undergraduate studies at U.W.P. I am looking forward to pursuing a career in Informal Education working for nonprofit organizations and societies.
This summer I will be a returning SPS Summer Intern who last year was one of the lucky two interns to work with SPS and the AIP Education Division in developing the 2007 SPS Outreach Catalyst Kit, or SOCK for short. That summer I enjoyed doing research on cool physics experiments and projects to include in the kit. It was literally a 'blast' testing our ideas on how to implement seat belt safety and the every popular Diet Coke and Mentos Reactions into our kit. This year I am really looking forward to working on developing extension projects in support of the APS Physics Quest project.
Not only in my spare time do I enjoy being a student of physics at U.W. Platteville but I also happened to have served eight years in the Wisconsin Army National Guard as a Radio Telephone Operator/Maintainer (RTO). Three years ago my unit out of Eau Claire, WI was deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom to the small community of Ad-Dujahyl which is about 30 miles north of Baghdad. There in the hot dessert sands of Iraq it was my job to be assistant RTO and gunner for my squad while we performed convoy escort missions to and from Coalition bases. I have to admit that through that experience it was indeed very interesting to see a different land and what the world looks like through a different culture's perspective.
Now for my hobbies and interests, man I have to say that it’s so hard to pick and choose which ones are my favorites. I have to say that I am for sure a big history buff and that anything of historical significance attracts my attention, especially if it’s from the Civil War. I have toured the two great battlefields of Vicksburg and Gettysburg and I am looking forward to exploring Antietam this summer and maybe catching a reenactment.
Of course when I’m not sniffing out historical monuments and I happen to get the urge to do a little bit of exercise I always enjoy a good game of baseball which happens to be one of my favorite sports. The University of Maryland has an awesome group from the physics department who happen to do pick up games weekly which are open to anyone. Of course the other attractant is the pizza and socializing afterwards. Hey you got to refuel right?
And finally for those rainy days in the summer when we get tied up in doors I enjoy firing up my crock pot and doing some cooking for the interns and doing some gaming. Last year we got pretty famous for our competitive Taboo games and this year I have a few new ones to add to the list. One of them is called Ninja Burger and the other is called Killer Bunnies. You guys will have to wait and see on these!
Well that is just the tip of the iceberg on my personality. I have to say that I am looking forward to meeting such an outstanding group of people in just a few short weeks. It will indeed be so much fun to explore the Washington D.C. area with you all. I am privileged to work with such an elite group to expand the realm of physics at a new level.