08/03/2017 - Trieste
ICTP's Physics Without Frontiers (PWF) program is growing, and is now accepting applications for programs in the 2017-2018 academic year. The outreach program strives to inspire, train, and motivate physics and mathematics students from developing countries with small populations of professional physicists, giving students a look into the larger international physics and math communities.
Started in 2012 by ICTP high energy physicist and ATLAS experiment member Kate Shaw, with assistance from ICTP physicist Bobby Acharya, the program at first focused on particle physics. Shaw helped facilitate day-long workshops for masters students, often accompanied by outreach activities to local secondary schools and meetings with local policy makers. Similar programs have been held in Nepal, Venezuela, Colombia, Vietnam, Lebanon, Tunisia, and Palestine. PWF provides teaching materials, the access to real data from CERN, and organizational support as local groups of scientists adapt the PWF framework for their community and students.
Now, inspired by the success of a regular PWF university course held in Palestine, as well as by a series of its “roadshows” that have spread the joy of physics throughout the developing world, PWF is expanding its support. If a university in a developing country lacks expertise in a specific field but wants to still offer a course in that field, PWF can help organize the course and connect the university with a guest lecturer. And it's not only high-energy and particle physics departments that can request courses, as PWF has expanded in its scientific focus as well. Now courses and roadshows can cover any field of physics or be math focused. Not only can motivated young scientists partner with PWF to run workshops and outreach roadshows, but departments can provide students more extensive training by requesting a full course.
With these expanded offerings, PWF is hoping to motivate and train many more students, and so is now accepting applications for programs in the 2017-2018 academic year. Young scientists enthusiastic about outreach are encouraged to apply to run a roadshow and workshops in their home countries, and departments are encouraged to request a university course in an area not covered by their faculty. Anyone excited and willing to get involved with PWF is encouraged to get in touch by emailing the program, as opportunities to inspire, motivate, and train young physicists may expand again in the future.