Congratulations to Professor Paul Anderson, newly-selected recipient of Wake Forest MacDonough Family Faculty Fellowships. The Wake Forest Faculty Fellowship program is a program of financial support designed to honor the University’s best teacher-scholars.
On Thursday April 18, 2022, the Department of Physics held a reception in honor of Sarah Fisher, who successfully defended her Ph.D. thesis entitled: “An investigation into nonstandard theories of gravity“. Dr. Fisher’s thesis was completed under the direction of Professor Eric Carlson.
The Department of Physics would like to welcome Candace Ring as our new Academic Coordinator. Candace earned her BS in physics at UNC Greensboro before working at Vanguard. We are very excited to have her join us!
Dr Ajay Ram Srimath Kandada received his PhD in Physics from Politecnico di Milano, Italy in 2013 for his work on ultrafast spectroscopy of organic photovoltaic materials. He subsequently moved to the Italian Institute of Technology as a post-doctoral researcher to investigate the excited state dynamics and defect physics of bulk metal-halide perovskites. In 2016, he received the Marie Sklodowska Curie global fellowship from the European Commission to investigate coherent exciton dynamics using advanced optical spectroscopies at University of Montreal (Canada), Georgia Institute of Technology (USA) and at the Italian Institute of Technology (Italy). He was appointed as Adjunct Assistant Professor at Wake Forest University in 2020 and later as tenure-track Assistant Professor in 2022. His research interests include electronic and optical properties of emerging semiconductors probed by ultrafast nonlinear spectroscopy and quantum-optical methods.
Stephen Winter received his PhD degree from the University of Waterloo (Canada) in 2014, for his work in the area of strongly correlated organic materials. He subsequently moved to the Institute for Theoretical Physics in Frankfurt (Germany) as an NSERC postdoctoral scholar to develop new theoretical approaches for quantum materials with strong spin-orbital coupling. He continued there as a Junior Project Leader. His research career has spanned a variety of topics in chemistry and physics, which has included a combination of synthetic, experimental, and theoretical efforts. Before joining the faculty at WFU in Fall 2020 as a tenure-track Assistant Professor, he had coauthored over 45 papers in materials research. His current research interests include theoretical modelling of complex materials with coupled spin, charge, and orbital degrees of freedom.
Dr. Oana Jurchescu has been named the Baker Family Professor of Physics. This Professorship begins July 1, 2021 whereupon Dr. Jurchescu will step down as the Denton Family Fellow. Dr. Jurchescu has been a model teacher scholar since she arrived at Wake Forest in 2009. She has won the Wake Forest University Reid-Doyle Prize for Excellence in Teaching, WFU Award for Excellence in Research, Kulynych Family Omicron Delta Kappa Award, and URECA Award for Excellence in Mentorship in Research and Creative Work. She has brought in almost 10 million dollars in external grant funding to run her world-class research program in organic electronics. The Physics department is proud of her and winning this professorship.
Prof. Kandada’s work was featured in the 2020 Journal of Materials Chemistry C Emerging Investigators issue. This collection gathers the very best work from materials scientists in the early stages of their independent career. Each contributor was recommended by experts in their fields as carrying out work with the potential to influence future directions in materials science.
Congratulations to Fred Salsbury, Professor of Physics, on being awarded the Scott Family Fellowship Award beginning on July 1, 2020 for three years. Prof. Salsbury was given the award in recognition of his “outstanding record of teaching and scholarship”.
Robert Bradford, a junior physics major/math minor doing research with Professor Oana Jurchescu; Noah Meyer a sophomore, physics/applied mathematics major doing research with professor Timo Thonhauser; and Fernando Rigal, a sophomore physics/applied mathematics major doing research with professor Daniel Kim-Shapiro, have been named 2019-20 Goldwater Scholars. The three were chosen from a pool of 1,200 natural science, engineering and mathematics students who were nominated by 443 academic institutions. Goldwater Scholars have impressive academic and research credentials that have garnered the attention of prestigious post-graduate fellowship programs. A maximum of three scholars are awarded to any single university and this is the first year that Wake Forest has had three winners.
Dr. Thonhauser has been awarded the title Wright Family Professor in Physics, effective July 1, 2019. Thonhauser is the founding Director of the new Center for Functional Materials and has been promoted to the rank of Full Professor effective July 1, 2019. The Wake Forest Professorships are endowed positions and are among the highest honors the institution can bestow on our faculty members. The selection criteria included: exceptional skill and sustained dedication in the classroom; outstanding commitment to student learning and growth beyond the classroom; a wide-reaching and significant record in scholarly and creative work; and sustained exemplary service to the department, the discipline, the College, the University, and the broader scholarly community.