Monday, May 23, 2011

H. Frederick Dylla Director's Matters

By H. Frederick Dylla, Executive Director

Meetings spring activity for many Member Societies

This year marks AIP's 80th anniversary of serving the physical science community. All those represented under the AIP umbrella, from members to officers to staff constitute a formidable support network for science. We are, nevertheless, reminded that few, if any, of us have been with our societies since their beginning. The purpose we promote is more potent than any of us, or any generation of us, for that matter. That rate of progress, however, is directly related to the activity and achievements of each generation and to how well we are able to build upon the inroads made by our predecessors. With better communication and greater opportunity to connect, it seems that we are more active now than ever before.

The spring meeting season embodies this activity. Among our Member Societies, the month of May alone saw the gathering of more than 9,000 students, educators, and professionals in meetings that took place around the US. APS drew 1,200 to Anaheim, CA, for their "April" meeting (April 30 - May 3), and on the other coast, in Baltimore, MD, nearly 4,500 gathered for CLEO: 2011-Laser Science to Photonic Applications. Before the month ends, AAS will hold its 218th meeting in Boston for a crowd topping 1300, and ASA will hold its 161st meeting in Seattle, WA, for an audience equal in size. Crystallographers will convene in New Orleans, LA, for ACA's annual meeting, and despite the highly-specialized field, nearly 700 are expected to take part.

We maintain a calendar of major Member Society meetings; please help us keep it updated. We offer our gratitude to the hard-working Member Society staff and volunteers who make these meetings possible.

Publishing Matters

AIP heads west to exhibit at MRS

Alison Loudon and Mary Griffin set out to San Francisco this past month to represent AIP at the 2011 MRS Spring Meeting. There were just over 5,200 registered attendees and booth traffic was steady. Many of those who stopped by our booth were familiar with AIP, and the majority of them were AIP journal authors. The main focus of our promotion was AIP Advances and the Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy. In addition, Loudon and Griffin represented all other AIP journals, UniPHY, AIP Conference Proceedings, and the journals of our publishing partners.

The UniPHY robots were a huge hit. If you haven't seen them dance, check out our video on YouTube. To entice people to come into the booth, we also had an Xbox Kinect for visitors to play, and we scanned more than 275 badges for our NOOK Color e-reader giveaway.

AIP exhibits at important UKSG conference

AIP exhibited again this year at the UKSG Annual Conference, held April 4–6 at the Harrogate International Centre in North Yorkshire, UK. As an organization, UKSG seeks to facilitate communication among librarians, publishers, and technology vendors, and its three-day conference serves as a forum for exchanging views and information on the rapidly changing global serials scene.

AIP staff members, John Haynes, Lori Carlin and Bruce Shriver, attended the conference. Carlin spoke at one of the breakout sessions; her talk, "So Much Data, So Few Connections," centered on a project that AIP recently undertook to aggregate all its customer and prospects data in order to fully understand its customers' needs and provide them with the greatest added value.

Physics Resources Center Matters

What do physics master's degree recipients do?


Each year, more than 1,600 people earn a physics master's degree. About half of them earn a master's en route to a physics PhD in the same department, where the other half leave their departments after earning their master's degrees.

What physics master's degree recipients do upon exiting their departments depends a great deal on citizenship. The majority of US citizens enter or remain in the workforce, with 18% continuing employment that they held while pursuing their degrees. By contrast, the majority of foreign citizens who exit their departments but remain in the US enter a graduate program in physics or another discipline at a different university.

Physics master's recipients who enter the workforce find employment in a broad range of careers, and about half work in the private sector. About 90% of those who work in the private sector are employed in the fields of science, technology, engineering, or mathematics.

The Statistical Research Center has recently published a report, focus on Physics & Astronomy Master's: Initial Employment, that examines the characteristics and initial outcomes of master's who left their departments. On the SRC website, you can read this and other reports that address the employment of physics and astronomy degree recipients.

2011 Gemant Award winner named

Stephen P. Maran AIP named renowned science writer and astronomer Stephen P. Maran as the 2011 recipient of the Andrew W. Gemant Award, "for his extraordinary contributions to the public communication of astrophysics through popular books and articles for broad audiences, his mentorship of science writers, and his dedication to enhancing the dissemination of science news throughout the world." Maran has authored or edited 12 books and more than 100 popular articles on astronomy and space exploration. His two most recent books, both written jointly with Laurence A. Marschall and published by BenBella Books in 2009, are Galileo's New Universe: The Revolution in Our Understanding of the Cosmos and Pluto Confidential: An Insider Account of the Ongoing Battles over the Status of Pluto. Maran will give his award lecture at the January 2012 AAS meeting. For more information, see the full press release.

To further the public communication of physics, the Gemant Award includes a $3,000 grant to the institution of the winner's choosing. The 2010 recipient, Daniel Altschuler, has just designated the UNESCO Chair in Education for Peace Puerto Rico to receive this portion of his award.


IPF logo
The talks (slides with audio) from the AIP/APS 2011 Industrial Physics Forum, "Industrial Application of Superconductivity," are now available on the IPF website.
What's happening this week

Tuesday, May 24

  • All hands quarterly update (Melville, NY)

Wednesday, May 25

  • ACP blood drive (College Park, MD)

Member Society Events

May 20 – 31

  • US Physics Team Training Camp (UMD/College Park, MD)

May 22 – 26

  • AAS 218th Meeting (Boston, MA)

May 23 – 27

  • ASA 161st Meeting (Seattle, WA)

May 28 – June 2

  • ACA 2011 Annual Meeting (New Orleans, LA)

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For past issues of this newsletter, visit the AIP Matters archives.