2nd Annual Research Open House

by Ben Bromley - Director of Graduate Studies

Last year, Professor Jordan Gerton, then the department’s Director of Graduate Studies, initiated a symposium to showcase faculty research and to help graduate students find thesis research advisors. Running with the success of this event, the Department of Physics & Astronomy held a second incarnation of the Graduate Research Symposium in November. This time, potential graduate students, including seniors at other Utah colleges and universities, attended as well.


The format of the symposium (many short descriptive talks) allowed for a more all-encompassing view of the U’s physics and astronomy research. By any measure, the breadth of topics is impressive, spanning at least 30 orders of magnitude in spatial scale from particle physics to nanoscience to extragalactic astronomy. The lineup of speakers included not only the department’s own, but several people from elsewhere on campus who do physics-based research. Speakers included Dr. Hamid Ghandehari (Nano Institute), Dr. Chris Johnson (Scientific Computing & Imaging), and Dr. Dennis

For the many faculty who were part of the symposium, it was a nice chance to get a reminder of what their colleagues are doing. Sometimes one forgets that the people in the lab next door or running the equations across the hall are doing world-class research that can be read about in Physical Review Letters, Astrophysical Journal Letters, Cell, or Nature.

The current Director of Graduate Studies, Ben Bromley, expresses thanks to all those who helped make the Symposium a success. The event should become a regular event, and may even involve more of the University of Utah campus than last year.