This award supports the Sixth Annual Conference for Undergraduate Women in Physics, a two-day conference for undergraduate women in physics. The conference takes place January 15-16, 2011 simultaneously at the University of Southern California (USC), Purdue University, the North Carolina Research Triangle (NCRT), and MIT. The conference has two overarching goals. The first is to give undergraduate women the resources, motivation, and confidence to apply to graduate school and to successfully complete a Ph.D. in physics or a related discipline. The second is to make undergraduate women in physics more aware of the wide range of career opportunities available to them. Regional conferences are held simultaneously in order to maximize the student attendance by minimizing cross- country travel requirements, to increase the excitement of the participants in the joint venture, and to allow the interactive simulcast of a keynote address. The conference goals are achieved by providing a series of inspiring research talks by women physicists, panel discussions on graduate school and physics careers, student presentation sessions, and ample opportunity for networking and informal mentoring. The success of these goals is measured by surveys given to students before and after the conference, as well as by longitudinal studies following the students' post-graduation paths and comparing them with female student cohorts who did not attend the conference.

Project Report

Held on January 14-16, 2011, Purdue University, The University of California, Santa Cruz, North Carolina State University, Duke University, and MIT each hosted a Conference for Undergraduate Women in Physics (CUWIP), a two-day meeting that focused on the critical transition from undergraduate to graduate study. The unifying aim of the four conferences was to encourage young women to apply to graduate school by providing a stimulating and supportive venue for them to learn about the exciting possibilities presented by advanced careers in physics. The Purdue conference reached 113 undergraduate women from the Midwest, bringing them together to establish a network of young women in physics. These women had the opportunity to learn about the frontiers of physics research and possible careers in physics with the goal of encouraging them to pursue higher degrees in physics. They interacted extensively with successful women physicists and had the chance to discuss challenges facing women in physics. For many of the students who presented talks and posters, the conference was their first opportunity to attend a scientific meeting and present their work. For others, the lab tours gave them their first view of active research labs at the forefront of the physical sciences. The conference featured a welcoming address by Professor Bortoletto and Professor Nick Giordano, the Head of the Purdue Physics Department. The president of Purdue University France Cordova, was the keynote speaker. Her presentation was broadcasted from Purdue to all sites. Support for the conference came from the NSF, the DOE, Physics Department, the College of Science, the Office of the Vice provost for diversity, the office of the Vice Provost for undergraduates, Purdue ADVANCE, the School of Science Circle of Women Donors, Coca-Cola, and NIST. Surveys were collected upon registration for the conference, on the final day of the conference, and several months following the event. The majority of the students responded very positively. The students who attended the conference came from: Purdue University, Indiana University, Case Western Reserve University, The University of Michigan, Miami University, Knox College, Wittenberg University, Manchester College, University of Wisconsin Madison, University Of Chicago, IUPUI, University of Illinois Urbana Champaign, Drake University, Illinois Wesleyan University, Cleveland State University, Wheaton College, Eastern Kentucky University, University of Wisconsin Eau Claire, Ohio University Zanesville, Grinnell College, Elmhurst College, RPI, Berea College, University of Iowa, St Norbert College, Denison College, Grand Valley State University, Wright State University, Illinois Institute of Technology, Ohio State University, Youngstown State University, Thomas More College, St Norbert College, Wayne State University, Vanderbilt University, University of Minnesota, Central College, Lewis University, Carleton College, Elmhurst College, Hamline University, Muskingum University, Marietta College, Baldwin-Wallace College. Speakers: Dr. Sima Setayeshgar, Dr. Florencia Canelli, President France Córdova, Dr. Laura Greene, Dr. Lisa Everett, Dr. Evalyn Gates Career Panelists: Matti Storie (technology attorney at Stoel Rives, LLP), L. Celeste Bottorff (responsible for building the strategic corporate reputation framework for Coca-Cola North America.) Dr. Katherine Harkay (Argonne National Laboratory) Debra Guillemaud (Quality Director for the Application Specific Products business at Texas Instruments) Student Research Talks Kristie Barber – Grand Valley State University Amanda Dahlman – Wright State University Emily Sprague – University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign Valerie Gray – St. Norbert College Blythe Moreland – University of Michigan Armin Nikkhah Shirazi – University of Michigan Monica Derris – Michigan State University Sara Stanchfield – University of Wisconsin Madison Student Posters Summer Blot – University of Chicago Joanna Bridge – University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Mallory Fuhst – Grand Valley State University Rebecca Gilson – Case Western Reserve University Sachiko Graber – Grinnell College Hanna Herbst – University of Wisconsin Madison Yige Li – Denison University Nikhita Mansukhani – University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Megan Marshall – Miami University Kate Miller – University of Michigan Alex Nguyen – University of Michigan Jessie Otradovec – University of Wisconsin Madison Crystal Pope – Elmhurst College Kaitlin Vandemark – Cleveland State University Kristi Wilson – Ohio University Zanesville Emily Worinkeng – Berea College Lab Tours: Pushkar, Malis, Lister, Savkhin, The Purdue University School of Nuclear Engineering PUR-1 reactor, The Purdue Rare Isotope Measurement Laboratory (PRIME Lab), The Purdue Particle Physics Microstructure Development facily. Conference Coordinators Special Thanks Dr. Daniela Bortoletto Whitney Beutel Brittany Daniels William Fornes Rachael Fulper Sandy Formica Rachelle Klinger Javier Magallanes Amanda Kollak Zohar Strinka Nicole Pfiester Latham Jaime Turner Jenna Walrath Sai Zhang Kat Ziegler

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Division of Physics (PHY)
Standard Grant (Standard)
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Program Officer
Kathleen McCloud
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Purdue University
West Lafayette
United States
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