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SPIE Professional July 2010

19 get SPIE grants for education, outreach

By Kathy Sheehan

Nineteen non-profits from around the world have been awarded 2010 SPIE Education Outreach grants to increase awareness about the importance of optics and photonics. Many of the recipients will use their funds for outreach projects that celebrate the 50th anniversary of the laser.

Faculty at the University of Newcastle in Australia are using their grant to offset expenses of producing a traveling science show that will focus exclusively on the laser. An undergraduate at the university is expected to present the show, Science NONfiction: The History and Science of Lasers, as part of the university’s Science, Maths, and Real Technology (SMART) program that tours throughout Australia.

Students in southern New Jersey will also benefit from an SPIE grant to Sean Kearney, founder of Laser Guy Productions. Kearney has been providing laser demonstrations to elementary school students in and around Marlton, NJ, for 12 years. The SPIE grant will allow him to buy new lasers and upgrade projectors and other equipment to expand and customize his offerings and the reach of his programs. At the heart of the upgrades will be a professional software suite for designing custom laser shows that educate and entertain.

Three Rivers Community College (Connecticut, USA) will use its grant funds on laser camps for kids. Other grants from the SPIE program will be used to train teachers, buy supplies and awards for science fairs, and support summer camps.

In 2009, SPIE provided $2 million for scholarships, grants, and other activities supporting research and education in optics and photonics.

See below for the first group of award recipients for 2010. Recipients of the second round will be announced later this year.

More information or to apply for a future grant: spie.org/outreach.

• Academy of Natural Sciences, USA

• Baylor University, USA

• Centro de Investigaciones Ópticas (CIOP), Argentina

• Centro de Investigaciones en Optica, Mexico

• Discovery Science Center of Orange County, CA, USA

• Extreme Ultraviolet Light Engineering Research Center, USA

• Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) SPIE Student Chapter, Mexico

• Koç University, Turkey

• Laser Guy Productions, USA

• OSA, National Capital Section, USA

• OSA, New England Section, USA

• Pennsylvania State Electro Optics Center, USA

• Texas State Technical College USA

• Three Rivers Community College, CT, USA

• University of Latvia SPIE Student Chapter, Latvia

• University of Laval SPIE Student Chapter, Canada

• University of Newcastle, SMART Program, Australia

• Women in Optics, University of Arizona, Optics Summer Academy for Young Scholars, USA

• Zachary (LA) Community School District, USA

Have a question or comment about this article? Write to us at spieprofessional@spie.org.

DOI: 10.1117/2.4201007.16

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