The 43rd Annual University of Alabama High School Physics Contest will be held on Friday, February 1, 2019 at the Ferguson Center on the campus of the University of Alabama. This event is open to all high schools and usually attracts schools from surrounding states as well as many from Alabama. As with last year, we will be holding a career panel to advise high school students about their options if they choose to pursue a Physics degree. The panel will be held from 1:00 p.m. – 2:15 p.m. in the Ferguson Ballroom.

Our panelists include:

Dr. Stephen Granade is a physicist who specializes in sensors for robotic vehicles. At Dynetics he is a Principal Analyst working on sensors for Army Unmanned Aerial Vehicles. He has worked on sensors that can read your fingerprint from 10 feet away, systems that let unpiloted helicopters land automatically, and a video-based sensor that helped guide the Space Shuttle to the Hubble Space Telescope.

His PhD research was on laser cooling and trapping neutral atoms to nearly absolute zero in order to create Fermionic superfluids and to study quantum mechanical effects on a macro scale. He is the host of NASA’s “No Small Steps” YouTube series, and has provided scientific commentary for, CBS Marketwatch, and Jalopnik.

Mr. John Weis is an Education Specialist at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center. He is responsible for education outreach including professional development for pre-service and in-service teachers, students and community outreach programs and liaising with state and local education agencies. John earned a BS in Science and Mathematics Teaching with an emphasis in Physics and Mathematics from the Florida State University and an MS in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Scranton.

Dr. Jeremy Bailin is a theoretical astrophysicist investigating the nature of galaxy formation, studying how the nearly uniform Universe that existed after the Big Bang transformed over almost 14 billion years into galaxies like the Milky Way.  Dr. Bailin is particularly interested in the structure and history of spiral galaxies, their dark matter and stellar halos, and their satellites.

Dr. Bailin received his doctoral degree from University of Arizona in 2004. He joined the faculty of The University of Alabama in 2012.

Dr. Adam Hauser  is a condensed matter physicist. His research group focuses on the fabrication and study of new electronic and magnetic materials.

Dr. Hauser received his PhD in Physics from The Ohio State University in 2010. He won the California NanoSystems Institute Elings Prize Postdoctoral Fellowship to conduct research at the University of California Santa Barbara from 2012-2015. Dr. Hauser joined the faculty of The University of Alabama in 2015.

Dr. Amy Jones in an observational astronomer. She is currently a postdoctoral researcher studying the chemical evolution of nearby galaxies. Dr.  Jones is a key member of the upcoming Sloan Digital Sky Survey V which will study star formation and the interstellar medium in unprecedented detail.

She received her doctoral degree from the University of Austria in 2014.

Julie Covin  (Teacher/ASIM) is the Physics Specialist for Alabama Science in Motion (ASIM) at the University of Alabama. She works through the UA/UWA In-Service Teacher Education Center with 12 school systems in nine counties in West Central Alabama.  She provides training, equipment and support to teachers of high school physics. ”

Kayla Cole is a graduate student at the University of Alabama pursuing a PhD in Material Sciences. Kayla is the recipient of a NASA Space Grant Fellowship. Ms. Cole and her advisor, Prof. Claudia Mewes (Department of Physics & Astronomy), are part of a larger NASA funded collaboration on “Micro-Magnetic driven Design of Multi-Component Magnetic Alloys for Advanced Electric Propulsion”. This new effort will assist the nation in the transition from primary fossil fuel to low-carbon propulsion technologies using such options as turboelectrics, which significantly reduce fuel burn as compared to current aircraft.

Allie McCarthy is a senior undergraduate Astronomy + Aerospace engineering major at the University of Alabama.

Other Resources:

American Physical Society (APS): Find physics job listings, education and career advice (e.g.,Why Study Physics?), upcoming workshops and meetings, and career and job-related resources.

American Institute of Physics (AIP): Find employment data for physicists and astronomers, hiring trendscareer options (PDF), and other career resources.

Back to HSPC main page