Recognition for Physics Dept.

May 20, 2010

Dr. Bahram Roughani, department head of Physics at Kettering, is among the handful of physics leaders around the country that have been invited in June to a special national summit by the American Institute of Physics.

Dr. Bahram Roughani, department head of Physics at Kettering University, will be part of an invitation-only meeting in June, hosted by the American Institute of Physics.  The special roundtable discussion includes leading corporate R & D leaders and physics department chairs from around the country and is aimed at strengthening research in the physics-related industries.

The Industrial Physics Leadership Summit III is June 11 at the American Center for Physics in College Park, Maryland.  Invited guests include department heads from Stanford, Duke, Case Western Reserve, Florida A & M, Purdue, Georgetown and Tulane.

“This is a very important honor for Kettering and its Physics program,” Roughani said.  “Our educational program was established with strong ties to industry and now is especially well known for its ability to intertwine education and industrial application.  That is exactly what this national summit is focused on,” he added. 

Only 30-35 professionals, representing industry and higher education, will attend the national gathering, whose theme is “Fueling Future Innovation: Coupling Industry and Universities for Physics Research.”  Summit III will build on the outcomes of Summits I and II, which were hosted in 2006 and 2008.  Roughani explained that AIP is an umbrella organization for some of the country’s most important professional physics organizations.  Member societies in AIP are:

  • American Physical Society
  • Optical Society of America
  • Acoustical Society of America
  • The Society of Rheology
  • American Association of Physics Teachers
  • American Crystallographic Association
  • American Astronomical Society
  • American Association of Physicists in Medicine
  • AVS The Science & Technology Society
  • American Geophysical Union along with Sigma Pi Sigma Physics Honor Society, Society of Physics Students and AIP Corporate Associates Program.

AIP’s other efforts include The Forum of Industrial and Applied Physics and AIP Corporate Associates Program, along with a prize for Industrial Application of Physics to Encourage Innovation. 

“Among the academic chairs that have been invited, Kettering is the only university that does not offer a Ph.D. degree, which is really reaffirming for our program,” Roughani said.  “The growth of our program has been fueled by our experiential education model and connections with industry partners and national labs.”

Roughani said this opportunity is another example of the professional momentum being enjoyed by Kettering’s Physics program.  The University just hosted the Spring 2010 meeting of the Ohio Region Section of The American Physical Society (OSAPS) April 30-May 1.  The theme of the meeting was “Industrial and Applied Physics - Connecting Theory and Practice,” which aligned perfectly with the June summit’s theme, he noted.

“Kettering Physics program has received state and national attention in the past few years.  Additionally, we have doubled the number of physics students in just three years,” he said, “The role of a program like ours is to get young children excited about future careers in Physics and technical fields and produce the next generation of technical minds to solve problems based on their scientific minds and abilities."

Kettering currently has 60 students majoring in Physics.  “And we expect more,” Roughani added.

Written by Patricia Mroczek