Dwight Nicholson Medal for Outreach

This award recognizes the humanitarian aspect of physics and physicists created through public lectures and public media, teaching, research, or science related activities. Recognition consists of the Nicholson medal and a certificate which includes the citation for which the recipient has been recognized. Up to $1,500 will be available for the recipient's travel expenses to the meeting at which the Medal is presented. It will be presented annually.

Establishment & Support

The Nicholson Medal was established in 1994 by the Division of Plasma Physics and the Forum on Physics and Society. It was originally named the Nicholson Medal for Humanitarian Service, and is currently administered by the Forum on Outreach and Engaging the Public. The Medal is sponsored by the friends of Dwight Nicholson, and through a generous gift from Professor Herb Berk, the Medal will be awarded with a stipend of $2,000, beginning in Spring 2018.

Rules & Eligibility

The Nicholson Medal for Outreach shall be awarded to a physicist who either through public lectures and public media, teaching, research, or science related activities,

1. has successfully stimulated the interest and involvement of the general public on the progress in physics, or

2. has created special opportunities that inspire the scientific development of students or junior colleagues, or has developed programs for students at any level that facilitated positive career choices in physics, or

3. has demonstrated a particularly giving and caring relationship as a mentor to students or colleagues, or has succeeded in motivating interest in physics through inspiring educational works.

Nominations are active for up three years.

Nomination & Selection Process

Deadline: Friday, June 30, 2017

The nomination must include:

  • A letter of not more than 5,000 characters evaluating the qualifications of the nominee(s).

In addition, the nomination should include:

  • A biographical sketch.
  • A list of the most important publications.
  • At least two, but not more than four, seconding letters.
  • Up to five reprints or preprints.

To start a new or update a continuing nomination, please see the Prize & Award Nomination Guidelines.

2017 Selection Committee Members: Yvan Bruynseraede (Chair), Don Lincoln, Ivan Schuller, Amber Stuver 


Serving a diverse and inclusive community of physicists worldwide is a primary goal for APS. Nominations of qualified women, members of underrepresented minority groups, and scientists from outside the United States are especially encouraged.