Student Life

The physics department provides students a closely knit liberal arts college setting. The Physics Journal Club is a unique department tradition to bring graduate students and faculty members together to discuss cutting-edge research. Both students and faculty members are required to select and lead a discussion on a recently published journal paper, usually not in their own research field. As such, the two constituencies are equals in this endeavor. Students are also required to orally present their own research together with undergraduate students at the end of summer and once each semester. There are also several departmental social events every year for everybody in the department (faculty, graduate students, undergraduate majors) helping to create a genuine sense of community.

In addition to the lively atmosphere in the physics department, our Graduate Group in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics sponsors many cross-disciplinary opportunities for students: a student run interdisciplinary Journal Club designed to bring together students from across the disciplines to discuss the latest in research developments, an annual Research Symposium for graduate students to present their ongoing work, talks on career preparation strategies by faculty members, and social events.

The culture of the department is one that values and respects women as physicists and creates opportunities for women (and all students) to achieve at the highest levels, with role models at all levels. The program’s unique position in a women’s college provides an informed and thoughtful perspective in this regard. All students will leave the program with a heightened sensitivity to, and knowledge of, the importance of training women scientists.

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