Jewell physics department hosts Society of Physics Students annual zone meeting

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A group picture of the attendees of the annual zone 12 SPS meeting. Courtesy of SPS.

On Feb. 22 and 23, William Jewell College’s Society of Physics Students (SPS) hosted the annual zone 12 SPS meeting. Students and professors from Truman State University, Missouri Southern University, UMKC, Rockhurst University and Benedictine College as well as a representative from the national offices of SPS came to Jewell for the event.

They were given tours of the laboratories and shown physics demos upon arrival Friday afternoon. After playing games including physics charades and Fermi questions, Dr. Maggie Sherer, Jewell professor of physics, gave a lecture on astronomy and the search for Earth-like planets.

The first night was devoted to getting to know other physics students in the zone and make more contacts in the field. After the lecture, students headed to Retro Bowl for some fun at cosmic bowl night.

Saturday’s events included research talks from students and a talk about 2019 PhysCon from the national representative. Students from several schools, including Jewell, presented their undergraduate research projects. This kind of presentation allows students to have more experience sharing research and allows for more feedback on the research itself.

PhysCon is a physics conference put on by SPS for physics undergraduates from all around the country to network, listen to talks from leaders in the field (including nobel laureates), present research, learn about graduate schools and career options and learn more about what is going on in the field of physics. The 2019 PhysCon will be held Nov. 14-16 in Providence, RI.

Megan Anderson, senior physics and Oxbridge: History of Ideas major and associate zone councilor for SPS zone 12 said of the event:

“SPS zone meetings are the one dedicated time each year that undergrad physics students from the region come together. Though we did plenty of fun physics-related things at our SPS Zone 12 Meeting this weekend, it was the in-between moments of connection – bonding over a song, giving high-fives during bowling, telling jokes while eating lunch – that really made the time special.”

Overall, the annual SPS Zone 12 was a success, and both students and faculty enjoyed their time at Jewell.

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