BP’s chief scientist kicks off physics conference

Screen shot 2013-01-07 at 5.56.09 PMBP’s Chief Scientist, Ellen D. Williams, visited UCF January 18 to kick off the three day Southeast Conference for Undergraduate Women in Physics.

SCUWP was one of six conferences being held all across the country that weekend. Although this is the third annual SCUWP, this is the first time one of the conferences has been held in Florida. Williams discussed the importance of scientific research to both finding new solutions and providing trusted data to underpin informed decisions about energy, water, land and minerals.

“She speaks so well and intelligently, but she’s still personable”, said Alexa Lamotte, a junior at UCF.  Lamotte also shared that she was excited to hear Susan Blessing, professor of physics at FSU, speak. Blessing spoke at the conference as well as serving on the status of women panel.

Bianca Hall, a graduate student at UCF, was also in a attendance at Williams’ speech. Hall was on the graduate panel at SCUWP to share her experiences on what grad school can do for a female physicist.

Talat Rahman, Provost Distinguished Research Professor and Chair at UCF, shared who she was looking forward to hearing.

“Laurie McNeil is fantastic”, she says. McNeil is a professor of physics and astronomy, and applied sciences and engineering at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She spoke and served on the status of women and graduate panel.

SCUWP’s goal is to help women meet and network with other women in physics, as well as to supply undergrads with information that will help them make tough decisions throughout their careers.

Ellen D. Williams was brought to UCF as a part of the Distinguished Speakers Series, which is hosted by the College of Sciences.

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