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Contest Rules - Apr 29, 2004 at 10:30AM
Admin Avatar
107 Posts

Best Chapter Activity

We thought it would be a good wrap-up of the
year to run a contest for the 'Best Chapter
Activity' - in 250 words or  less, tell us
the story of the 'best' thing your chapter
did this year.

Bonus points will be awarded if you
successfully upload a picture of your
chapter (or, even better, the event
described) into your profile so everyone can
see the evidence!

Of course, there will be prizes, and what's
better during finals week than FREE PIZZA

Prizes will be awarded to the chapter with
the most posts (a-la the haiku contest) and
also to the chapter with what we deem to be
the best post (humor, cleverness,

Please place your chapter name in the title
of the post.  All posts must be on the board
no later than 5pm on Friday, May 7.  
The clock is ticking!

Dodge this.

Replies to Contest Rules

Spring Trip - Apr 29 2004 9:55PM
3 Posts

How can I choose one 'best' activity because our chapter does so many great things.  I guess I'll go with our Spring Trip.  Members of our SPS Chapter (University of Louisville) spent four days of our Spring Break on a trip to New York.  We got to tour Brookhaven National Lab and spend some time in the City. Awesome!

Our trip to Goddard - Apr 30 2004 5:03PM
8 Posts

I'd say our best SPS event was the trip to  NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center in Maryland.  Through one of our religion profs, we had been put in touch with a scientist working on the X-ray telescope Astro-E2.  Well, through her, we got a special inside tour of the facility.  We were allowed on the ground level where equipment was kept, and got to check out the centrifuge, up close and personal.  After lunch, we got a tour of different labs in the facility, including one for the Astro-E2 detector, and we got a chance to talk to many of the scientists working at the facility.  My friend took pictures and put them online at ...enjoy!

SPS Truman State University - May 01 2004 1:01AM
1 Posts

We also do all sorts of activities which, as physics students, we certainly enjoy. Not the least of these activities has to do with the fact that as physics majors, we have a lot of homework. Beyond the ever increasing homework loads there is some time for extra fun. During such rare occasions we like to beat the faculty at football (soccer for the uninitiated), have a BBQ for carnivores and vegans alike, kill some time watching England's Premiership League or the UEFA Champion's League (go Monaco!!!), and have other get-togethers such as the much celebrated "Bad Science Fiction Movie Night" during which we watch such scientific disasters as "Earth Girls Are Easy" or "The Core." "The Core" was of course the latest movie we watched and certainly every physics major must have been thrilled to here things such as: "torque=r'cross'F" or "integrate volume" on a Hollywood movie. Other than that we have debates about the best strategy when playing "Master Mind." Of course there is always the regular meeting every other week during which we eat pizza and discuss common topics of the day such as famous quotes and fun things to print on T-shirts. They can both come together as in Rutherford's quote: "In science there is only Physics; all else is just stamp-collecting." Since we do not have a big budget and recently we have had a budget crisis, all we do have these get-togethers. And I have equally fond memories of all of them.

University of Louisville - May 01 2004 2:14AM
zyxtan Avatar
30 Posts

Where do I all expenses paid trip to New York was nice,Manhatten is always interesting. An all expenses paid trip to West Lafayette to see a Mach 7 wind tunnel and two phase nuclear reactor coolant flow system was nice..oh not to mention a visit to the high energy lab. Oh, don't let me forget the supercomputer at Brookhaven, or the Phoenix detector..I have a feeling next fall will be even more interesting. I can't forget to mention meeting Douglas Hartree's last student( of Hartree Fock fame) on campus a few weeks ago..or Mark Wadsworth who designed the "eyes" for the Mars Rover(he stopped by for a chat). Whew its kinda hard to remember it all!

University of Louisville - May 01 2004 2:23AM
zyxtan Avatar
30 Posts

University of Louisville

Where do I all expenses paid trip to New York was nice,Manhatten is always interesting. An all expenses paid trip to West Lafayette to see a Mach 7 wind tunnel and two phase nuclear reactor coolant flow system was nice..oh not to mention a visit to the high energy lab. Oh, don't let me forget the supercomputer at Brookhaven, or the Phoenix detector..I have a feeling next fall will be even more interesting. I can't forget to mention meeting Douglas Hartree's last student( of Hartree Fock fame) on campus a few weeks ago..or Mark Wadsworth who designed the "eyes" for the Mars Rover(he stopped by for a chat). Whew its kinda hard to remember it all!

best activity at sps chapter of louisville - May 01 2004 8:19PM
2 Posts

too many of them. its kind a hard to remember but i will try.

1. trip to purdue physics dept.
2. spring trip to brookhaven national lab.
(even though i was not present for both these trips because of my work related to research, i think this awesome activities since both these trips were paid off. free trips to both these places).
3. out reach activity by marketing physics at middle and high schools in louisville.
4. Mark Wadsworth's (the person who designed the 'Eye Balls" for the Mars Rover, an alumini of UOFL), colloquium for our honors colloquium.

5. More over we are the Papa John Cardinal SPS chapter, who else can love Papa John's Pizza more than us.

entries?! - May 06 2004 8:26AM
Admin Avatar
107 Posts

Hey, I know you guys are busy with finals and all, but come on!  One paragraph!  FREE PIZZA!  What more could you ask for?

Dodge this.

Georgian Court University - May 13 2004 3:29PM
Tabor Morris
1 Posts

Two main projects:  
1.)  Raising money for physics lab equipment for a new high school in Kenya.
2.)  Installing and planting trees, etc in Discovery Garden - a garden that incorporates science in a serene friendly environment.

'Best' SPS Chapter Activity, University of Rochester - May 13 2004 4:47PM
1 Posts

We organized a massive department-wide trip (i.e. undergrads, grad students, staff and faculty) trip to see the Michael Frayn play 'Copenhagen', about a fictional conversation between Niels and Margrete Bohr and Werner Heisenberg. There was a discussion a week prior to the show, led by Professor Joe Eberly, a senior faculty member renowned in the field of theoretical quantum optics. The trip was a success, although it had to be restaged - an accident canceled the special performance for groups like ours, and resulted in us attending later performances in smaller groups. We belive that it was the largest turn-out for a completely SPS-run special event in the last decade or so!

The Best thing NMSU SPS did in 2004 - May 13 2004 5:13PM
1 Posts

SPS at New Mexico State University had the
awesome opportunity to host the Zone 16
Spring meeting and it was a blast. We had
approximately 60 students participate from
all over our zone which includes only 7
schools. With the aid of an excellent
department, the generosity of SPS national,
and some hard work from our members, we
managed to provide most of our guests with
free lodging and some yummy food. We had
some very interesting student and faculty
talks. Our perfect surprise guest was Gary
White. The highlight of our meeting was
the cool experiments we did at the White
Sands Military Range Optics facility using
high speed, 7,000 frame per second, video
cameras to photograph things that happen
really quick. For example, popcorn
popping, water balloon popping, and a spurt
of the moment experiment involving Mr.
Sebastian Sandersius from ASU getting
slapped in the face, were among the
experiments. There is evidence of this at Click on
the "Physics at NMSU" button. Then you'll
see highlights involving the high speed
videos. Our site is currently being worked
on and some things don't work, but the face
slap does work and is worth watching!!! We
did many other things during our zone
meeting including getting shocked by cool
physics demos, Bar-B-Que-ing, and making
new connections with fellow SPS members.
That was our "best thing" this year.

-Jose Leo Banuelos, NMSU SPS pres.

-Tune into our website in about one week,
hopefully it all runs well by then.

University of Wisconsin-La Crosse - May 13 2004 5:16PM
Mike Jackson
1 Posts

The SPS chapter at UW-L performed a number of activities this past year including: serving as tutors and lab assistants; assisting with open houses, welcome picnics and pizza parties; assisting in the hosting visiting scientists and distinguished seminar speakers (including speakers from the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, the National Science Foundation and 1996 Nobel Laureate Dr. Robert Richardson); assisting in the hosting of the annual meeting of the Wisconsin Association of Physics Teachers; and assisting in the annual performance of the "Physics and Laser Light Extravaganza" shows for area elementary and middle schools (and other organizations such as the Girl Scouts).  These shows will wrap up next week and we anticipate that over 1000 students and teachers will have gone through these shows this year.  

However, the one activity that most accurately describes this year's "Best Chapter Activity" was the Indian Cuisine Fundraising dinner.  Twenty-four physics students participated in the event; selling tickets, cooking, cleaning and serving 285 people authentic Indian cuisine (including Chicken Curry, Chicken Tikka, Chicken Biriyani, Samosas, Tomato Raitha, Potato Cauliflower Curry, Potato-Peas Curry and Naan).  The event raised over $2,600 for the freshman physics scholarship program.  The SPS club also arranged for donations of food items from a number of local businesses.

Ball State - Chapter Activities - May 13 2004 6:05PM
2 Posts

This year our chapter received a Marsh White award and we were able to set up an outreach program to the local Middle Schools.  It was a lot of fun for both our chapter members and the Middle School students.  We took Sound, Magnetism, and Static electricity experiments.  The students really enjoyed the Van deGraff Generator.

In addtion we were given the opportunity to help out our department with a science advising night and introducing our department to High School Juniors and Seniors interested in majoring in physics.
It was an awesome year!

Bucknell's SPS Highlight - May 14 2004 12:00PM
Sally Koutsoliotas
1 Posts

Our greatest event this year was the Central Pennsylvania
regional physics conference.  

The meeting was run over two days, Friday and Saturday,
with Nobel laureate Dr Leon Lederman as our keynote

Our SPS invited other SPS groups to sleep over for
the night (saving them the cost of a hotel room) and
we also raised money to host a Physics Student banquet
prior to the public talk.  We managed to have the
greatest number of physics students ever at this
yearly conference.  We extended the invitation to high school
students and were pleased to have six high school students
stay over with more coming for the banquet and the talk.
After the talk, everyone went back to watch movies,
play games, talk, and eat more.

The real highlight was the student-only time we had to talk
with Dr Lederman about his experiences as a physicist and
meeting physics people from other Colleges!

Rollins College - Our best event of the year - May 14 2004 12:56PM
1 Posts

We just started our chapter's SPS up again
this past year and although it was our first
year, we had a lot of fun and the year was
very successful.  Although we had a few
really fun events, I think our best event of
the year was FARADAY.  It was a picnic type
atmosphere for students, faculty, and staff
held to celebrate and promote physics.  We
had a great turnout and the food was
amazing.  We had some fun and did some
physics.  We also participated in our local
Relay For Life (sponsored by the American
Cancer Society) and in order to raise money
we held a raffle during Faraday in which we
raised 144 dollars to go towards cancer
research and help cancer patients.  It was a
great experience and it is an event we are
going to have every year.  Not only was it
fun and knowledgeable but it brought the
students and the faculty closer in a non-
academic environment.

University of Florida- Best Event of 2004 - May 14 2004 3:05PM
1 Posts

The University of Florida's Society of Physics Students was involved in many exciting activities this past year. Every year, we strive to encourage today's bright young minds to embrace physics. Our chapter has been involved in presenting to the community 'Physics is Phun', a presentation of really cool experiments that not only grab the attention of children (K-12) but also brings out the 'kid' in the adults and all the SPS'ers involved.

This year, our most exciting SPS event was when we decided to bring 'Physics is Phun" to the Gainesville Girl's Club. This is an after school program that sponsors young girls of all ages. We decided that a great way to reach out to the girls with science was to start a science club and immediately we decided to start the first ever "Rocket Club". The goal of the "Rocket Club" was to teach the girls how to build model rockets and at the same time teach them the physics of it all. More importantly, we wanted to bond with these girls and hopefully have enough of an impact on them that they would become interested in science and learn about physics. At our "Rocket Club" meetings, the girls picked up quickly and at the end of the program, they were showing us how to make the rockets. The final meeting of this year, we got to launch the rockets. It was absolutely wonderful to see the girls faces when their rockets flew into the air.

See my profile for a picture of the rocket making process!

SPS at UT-Knoxville - May 14 2004 5:30PM
AstroGailis Avatar
7 Posts

The best event...must resist urge to wax philosophical...

The most *rewarding* event has been the progress we've made with our major high school outreach program--a cosmic ray detection project.  The high schoolers work on Saturdays (for us, it's more of an all-week kind of thing) to build cosmic-ray detectors and learn the electronics needed to operate them.  We students are learning as well and trying to stay at least a step ahead of them.  As cliche as it sounds, it really is fun, educational, and gives lots of warm fuzzies to see these really smart high schoolers getting so excited about particle physics.

The most *memorable* event within our group is more an ongoing series of events...let's hear it for cheap burger 'n' beer night at local restaurants!  Every Wednesday night saw a surprising number of the club getting together for a few hours of eating, talking, laughing, and even occasinally getting work done! (The jury's still out on whether the decisions made then should stand.)  And we'll long remember the annual physics department picnic earlier this month...traditionally, few students attend, but our SPS group pushed the members hard this year, and I think we started a good thing :).  The softball game was a highlight--Undergrads 17, Grad Students and Profs 9.  Besides our outstanding athletic ability, we're also mostly Americans and know baseball, while the grads and profs, well, aren't and don't.  Too bad I don't have a pic of when our dept head tripped on the way to first base and tried to bribe our pitcher with a few A's...
But I do have some pics from the other things on my profile--check them out!

Have a great summer, everyone!

Deadline Extended - May 15 2004 12:00PM
Admin Avatar
107 Posts

Hi all, we've extended the dealine for enties until 5:00pm, May 14th.  Good luck!

Dodge this.

The envelope, please... - May 25 2004 9:13AM
Admin Avatar
107 Posts

First off, thanks to all who posted - great to know SPS chapters are out there doing great things.  

The pizza awards will be mailed to the winning chapters in the next week or so - we are awaiting their arrival from PapaJohn's headquarters.

The winners:

1. New Mexico State University - Hosting what looked like a very cool zone meeting

2. University of Rochester - Arranging for the entire department to go see "Copenhagen"

3. University of Louisville - Field trip to Brookhaven National Lab

Again, congratulations to all.  Don't forget to start up a summer journal in the 'journals' thread and keep everyone posted on your summer experiences!


Dodge this.

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