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Beautiful British Columbia provided the backdrop for the 2009 Annual Meeting of the Northwest Section held on 14-16 May in Vancouver, B.C. The host of the meeting was the University of British Columbia. The Local Organizing Committee chaired ably by Janis McKenna did a terrific job in organizing what turned out to be a very popular meeting. The banquet was held at the Sage Bistro on the UBC campus. The banquet speaker was Prof. Jaymie Matthews, UBC, who provided an entertaining and thoughtful talk: "What if Galileo had a space telescope?" The following photo shows some of the attendees visiting with one another on the balcony of the dining room prior to the beginning of the program and meal. The balcony looks out onto the waters of the Strait of Georgia. The Program Committee chaired by Mike Miller put together an interesting and eclectic collection of invited speakers. In summary, there were 278 registered participants in a program featuring 27 invited talks, 82 contributed talks and 32 contributed posters.
For more information concerning the meeting including the details of the program, the meeting website is still up and operating
Above: A banquet table full of happy folks from Linfield College. From left to right: Austin Stafford, Dr. Michael Crosser, Bradley Schorer, Tyler Harmon, Michael Holten.
The twelfth Annual Meeting of the APS Northwest Section will be held on the beautiful campus of Whitman College in historic Walla Walla, Washington, on Thursday-Saturday, September 30-October 2, 2010. There is a special event on Thursday evening: The Brattain Lecture given by Dr. Barry Barish, Maxey Auditorium, 7:30 pm. The chair of the Local Organizing Committee is Mark Beck (firstname.lastname@example.org). The Program chair is Jennifer Heath (email@example.com). As usual, the annual meeting covers the broad sweep of physics. Contributed talks from all areas of physics are welcome. Meet physicists in our region; hear about the interesting research going on here in the Northwest - in industry, at government labs and at universities. If you are a student, come network, meet other students as well prospective employers in the area, consider presenting a poster or a contributed talk.
Special Note on Accommodations:
We remind you that this meeting is our first scheduled for the fall time frame. This new time should cause fewer problems with regards conflicts in schedules due to large spring meetings and graduation exercises. However, classes will be in session at Whitman College during the meeting, so no on-campus housing will be available. Blocks of rooms have been set aside at the hotels listed on the conference website, http://www.whitman.edu/content/apsnw/accommodations but these rooms will only be held until August 30, 2010. Walla Walla is a small town with a busy tourism industry; it is not unheard of for every hotel room in town to be booked on a weekend. Meeting attendees are strongly encouraged to make their room reservations early.
A major emphasis for APS sections is to encourage young scientists to engage in professional discourse with their colleagues. Science is a learning community and it is never too early in one's career to network with colleagues in the profession. To this end, the Northwest Section works very hard to make our meetings friendly to young people on a small budget. We rotate meeting locations to bring meetings to the different regions of the Northwest in an attempt to keep travel costs down. Most years we are able to find dormitory housing to reduce the daily cost of attendance. Our executive council works closely with the organizing committees to keep the registration fees as low as possible. Campus deans and departments contribute to the meeting both in cash and in kind to keep costs low. We are tight with meeting budgets to ensure that we provide an affordable forum for postdocs and students and for those with small grant support to have a chance to attend, network with colleagues and show their stuff.
To further encourage student participation at the annual meeting, we subsidize student registrations and banquet fees at the annual meeting. Welcoming undergraduate physicists is especially important to continue to keep our field strong. Undergraduate student members of the Section also are eligible for travel grants to attend the annual meeting.
Each year, representatives from the Northwest Section visit Congress to inform legislators from the Northwest about the importance of science to the health of their districts, their state and the nation. In these meetings, members of Congress were thanked for past actions supporting science budgets, but were also made aware of specific actions they could take to increase support for science. The APS Office of Public Affairs provides important support for this effort. They provide good coaching on the practicalities of communicating with members of the House and Senate. On the day of the visits, folders for each visit are provided that are tailored for each member of Congress, identifying key information and requested actions. APS also provides a folder on each member, detailing that member's positions on science support and providing talking points that were tailored to that member.
These visits and the ensuing follow-up phone calls and e-mails have real positive effects, increasing support from Members of Congress for science funding following our visits. Representatives of the executive committee will return to the Capitol again each February to encourage continuing support for science.
If you check the NWAPS website, you will find that all jobs posted with the APS Jobs Service that are in the Northwest US and Western Canada are now being reposted on the "Careers" section of our website. We hope that this will be of some use to the membership. Thanks to Shannon Mayer, U. Portland , and Mary Alberts, Whitworth, for the idea.
Northwest Section officers handle many items of business for the members. The Executive Committee meets face to face at the annual meeting, but we conduct business electronically throughout the year. Input from the membership is always welcome.
The terms of office of the Officers and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee shall begin at the close of the Regular Meeting of the Section following their election.