Shirley Ann Jackson Wins Award From the American Association of Physics Teachers

Shirley Ann Jackson, the president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, has been named as the 2021 recipient of the prestigious Hans Christian Oersted Medal, presented by the American Association of Physics Teachers.

The Oersted Medal is named for Hans Christian Oersted a Danish physicist, who made significant contributions to the field of electromagnetism. The award is given annually to a person who has had outstanding, widespread, and lasting impact on the teaching of physics.

Beth Cunningham, executive officer of the American Association of Physics Teachers, stated that “Dr. Jackson has made many contributions to physics and physics education. Her valuable contributions to science have resulted in useful technologies in the telecommunications field. She continues her effort to preserve and strengthen the U.S. national capacity for innovation by advocating for increased support for basic research in science and engineering. She has also advocated for expanding the domestic talent pool by attracting women and members of underrepresented groups into careers in science.”

Dr. Jackson was chair of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission from 1995 to 1999. She then left government service to take over as the 18th president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1999. In 2016, Dr. Jackson was awarded the National Medal of Science from President Barack Obama.

Dr. Jackson holds a bachelor’s degree and a Ph.D. in theoretical elementary particle physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She was the first African American woman to earn a Ph.D. in any discipline from MIT.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Get the JBHE Weekly Bulletin

Receive our weekly email newsletter delivered to your inbox

Latest News

Recent Books of Interest to African American Scholars

The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education regularly publishes a list of new books that may be of interest to our readers. The books included are on a wide variety of subjects and present many different points of view.

Online Articles That May Be of Interest to JBHE Readers

Each week, JBHE will provide links to online articles that may be of interest to our readers. Here are this week’s selections.

The Eutychus Phenomenon

Part of the Eutychus phenomenon is viewing those with diverse viewpoints in the room as fortunate, but not vital contributors. The narrative that affirmative action scours the earth looking for inept candidates to give them what mediocre White people rightfully deserve is oft repeated and sadly, embraced by many.

Three Black Presidents in Higher Education Announce Their Resignations

Cal Poly Humboldt President Tom Jackson, Florida A&M University President Larry Robinson, and Morehouse College President David Thomas have all announced their plans to step down from their respective presidential appointments.

Featured Jobs