March 19, 2002

Business Meeting Minutes

Present: John Tully, Laurie Butler, Roger Miller, Bruce Garrett, Roseanne Sension, Peter Rossky, and six other members in attendance

  1. John Tully presented the awards for the new DCP Fellows. Nancy Makri was the only one of the nine new Fellows in attendance.

  2. Bruce Garrett introduced the five recipients of Graduate Student Travel Awards. Aravind Asthagiri and Milen Kostov were in attendance.

  3. A financial report was presented by Bruce Garrett. Our income has exceeded expenses for the last few years and the balance at the end of the last fiscal year (ending June 2001) was $74,801.20. This year we anticipate larger expenses, primarily for travel and registration expenses for the March meeting.

  4. There was little feedback on this years DCP program at the March Meeting. Attendance at the DCP focus session has been good in general, with some of the invited talks drawing large enough crowds that people were standing in the back of the seminar room. New handouts of the schedule of talks were provided this year for each DCP session.

  5. Ideas for DCP focus topics at next years March Meeting were solicited. Roger Miller discussed the need to strike a balance between breath of topics and limiting the topics so that they can have more sessions for a given topic to keep people at the meeting longer.

  6. It was recommended that the emails announcing the newsletter contain a list of topics covered in the newsletter as well as the link to download the pdf file.

  7. The APS proposal to require that APS Prizes are a minimum of $10,000 by 2006 was presented. Two DCP Prizes would be affected by such a decision: the Plyler and the Broida Prizes. John Tully had already sent a response to Judy Franz stating that it was reasonable to try to raise prizes to $10,000, but that he did not support the new proposal since the stature of these prizes has been established by the prestige of their many recipients. There was agreement with the basic content of John's letter. The position of the DCP is to make all attempts to increase the endowment for the affected prizes, but if this is not successful to retain the prize (if allowed by the APS) as the value of the prize is not measured by its momentary award, but rather by the recognition from colleagues offered in prizes with such long-standing quality recipients

  8. We solicited ideas for how the DCP can better serve its membership and for how we can better communicate the value of the DCP to potential members. It was suggested that we find a mechanism to reach students in chemical physics and physical chemistry programs, such as sending an email to DCP members at academic institutions to forward on to their students. A free first year of membership to the DCP would be offered to all Ph.D. students, who may also join the APS for free.

  9. Michael Coplan received a positive response to his suggestion to compile information on undergraduate and graduate programs in Chemical Physics. We discussed how we can communicate this information to potential chemical physics students. Michael is willing to work on developing a more complete list of chemical physics programs that would be posted on the DCP web site. It was suggested that we find other ways to link into this information from other web sites. Roger Miller suggested that in analogy to biochemical programs, which are successful because they are viewed as a more challenging curriculum, chemical physics program, particularly for undergraduates, may benefit from this same aspect.

  10. Other possible education outreach activities included:
    • Creating a postdoctoral clearinghouse (similar to that run by the ACS Theoretical Chemistry Subdivision). Bruce Garrett will check into the success of this service before any decision is made to move ahead on this suggestion.

    • Participation in the "Lunch with Students" at the March meeting. The executive committee needs to enlist a suitable person who will be attending next years meeting.