The Texas A&M University-Commerce chapter of the Society of Physics Students (SPS) has won a 2022-23 Outstanding Chapter Award from the SPS national office. This is the seventh consecutive year the chapter has been recognized for its excellence as a top-tier student-led physical sciences organization, a designation given to fewer than 10 percent of all SPS chapters at colleges and universities in the United States and internationally.
SPS is a professional association designed for students, and membership is open to anyone interested in physics and related fields. SPS operates within the American Institute of Physics, an umbrella organization for professional physical science societies.
The SPS chapter at A&M-Commerce was advised by Drs. Bahar Modir and Kurtis Williams. Led by students, the chapter's 2022-2023 officers were:
- James Hirons, '23, Physics and Mathematics
- Zorayda Martinez, '23, Physics and Mathematics
- Makayla Teer, '24, Physics
- Ryan Rodriguez, '25, Mathematics and Physics
“Year after year, this student-led organization continues to astound me,” said Dr. Kurtis Williams, interim head of the department. “To be awarded this recognition by the national office seven years in a row is an amazing testament to the quality, leadership and dedication of physics students at A&M-Commerce.”
SPS chapters are evaluated on their level of interaction with the campus community, the professional physics community, the public, and with SPS national programs. The Outstanding Chapter Award recognizes high levels of outreach as well as unique approaches to fulfilling the mission of SPS to “help students transform themselves into contributing members of the professional community.”
During the 2022-23 school year, the A&M-Commerce chapter continued its outreach by leading visiting high school students in group activities and career discussions at the department's bi-annual Physics Days. Members routinely tutor students in introductory physics and astronomy classes throughout the school year. In Spring 2023, the A&M-Commerce chapter of SPS hosted other chapters from across Texas for the annual SPS Zone 13 Meeting. On April 8, 2024, the chapter will play a crucial role in helping A&M-Commerce students safely view the total solar eclipse in Commerce as part of a university-wide celebration of the once-in-a-lifetime event.
Featured photo by Ulia Koltyrina. | Adobe Stock