Chicago mayor, council honor Argonne physicists for creating innovative science program at city high school

January 23, 2008

ARGONNE, Ill. — Two physicists at the U.S. Department's Argonne National Laboratory have been honored for their work in creating one of the nation's premiere science programs for high school students.

Susan Fischer and C.J. “Kim” Lister were honored Jan. 9 with a certificate of commendation from Chicago Mayor Richard Daley and the city council for their work with the Nuclear Physics Summer School at Hyman G. Rickover Naval Academy in Chicago.

“The students get excited about the possibilities,” Fischer said. “It was nice to see the summer school recognized.”

Many of the students are young women and minorities, who generally have been under represented in the sciences.

Students spend a week exploring the world of physics through experiments in nuclear physics, lectures on physics topics, presentations from scientists about research and science professions and tours at Argonne .

Fischer and Lister said the students of today will make the discoveries of tomorrow in laboratories like Argonne and deserve to know what is available to them.

“It's clear the students are bright,” Lister said. “They enjoyed the more difficult projects that challenged them.”

The summer school recently was named one of 10 best “Current Best Practice” programs for nuclear science education in the country by the Nuclear Science Advisory Committee of the U.S. Department of Energy and National Science Foundation.

It was created to expose inner city children to careers in science. The summer school is approaching its third year in existence and organizers hope to expand the program to include chemistry and biology.