SPS Zone 2 Meeting

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SPS Zone Meeting

December 11, 2019

Rochester, NY 14627

Meeting host:

Society of Physics Students


Linda Cassidy

SPS Chapter:

On the morning of Saturday, March 30, 2019 the Thirty-Eighth Rochester Symposium for Physics (Astronomy and Optics) Students (RSPS, which also served as a Northeast Regional Zone 2 Meeting for the National Society of Physics Students, was held at the University if Rochester. Sixty-seven registrants consisting of presenters, advisors, non-presenters, and guests, from Colgate University, Houghton College, Manhattan College, RIT, Roberts Wesleyan College, Siena College, SUNY Fredonia, SUNY College at Brockport, University of Rochester and University of Wisconsin - Whitewater. All sixty-seven enjoyed the conference luncheon served in the Hawkins-Carlson Room of Rush Rhees library, followed by a lively game of Physics Jeopardy. Conference guests received a mid-morning refreshment break during the poster session and refreshments again at the time of departure.

Founded in 1981 the RSPS symposia has endured and strengthened to become a conference that undergraduate students, faculty, visitors, and guests look forward to each Spring that joins northeastern regional institutes in the field of physics and related fields of science. As of 2006, the RSPS research conference began a new tradition with Houghton College, of hosting the symposium at other northeastern regional colleges every third year. The RSPS was another great success held at West Point, 2009 and Siena College, 2012 and at SUNY Oswego in 2015 and at SUNY Brockport in 2018. As of 2007, the RSPS conference registration is available online.

The Symposium is a one-day meeting at which undergraduate students give fifteen-minute papers and/or poster session on research projects, library study projects, independent laboratory work, senior thesis, or summer projects, in fields of physics, astronomy, optics, and other related fields. The abstracts that have been submitted by students have covered the subject matter quite diversely, such as condensed matter, astronomy, nuclear physics, environmental, medical and biological physics, particle physics, quantum optics, instrumentation and techniques, and educational physics. The RSPS research conferences are less formal than American Physical Society Meetings, however, the format is the same.

The 2019 conference options for supporters and colleagues to attend offered a diversification in levels of knowledge and wide range with 28 presentations and 10 posters for the poster session in the fields of all related fields of physics. The symposium consisted of three separate parallel sessions (Session I, III and IV) and a poster session (Session II). One can see from the list below the various fields of physics, astronomy and optics applied from the presentations given by the undergraduates who participated in the symposium.

The conference continues to make modifications to improve efforts and support giving undergraduates opportunities to work with their advisors and present their work in the fields of physics, astronomy and optics, while maintaining the origination of being one of the best Regional Zone 2 conferences offered annually.

Areas of Alignment: