UMCP Physics Professor Sylvester "Jim" Gates Appointed USM Regents Professor
Adelphi, Md. (Jan. 15, 2013) -- Chancellor William E.
"Brit" Kirwan has appointed Sylvester James "Jim" Gates to the position of University
System of Maryland (USM) Regents Professor. The honor, among the System's most
prominent faculty recognitions, recognizes the exceptional academic and
research achievements of Gates, a tenured professor in the Department of
Physics at the University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP).
According to USM
Board of Regents policy, "the Regents Professorship is established by the board
to recognize one or more faculty members whose record of scholarly achievement
and potential for truly exceptional service to the System and its institutions
warrants appointment to the most prestigious rank in the University System."
In endorsing his nomination
for the appointment, a faculty committee of peers noted three areas of
outstanding achievement, in particular: Gates' international recognition for
his achievements in the field of physics; service to the university and the
citizens of Maryland; and serving as an ambassador for both the university and the
field of physics.
"It is one of the
true pleasures of my career to be able to honor Professor Gates with this
prestigious recognition," Kirwan said. "He is an extraordinary individual, a
man who simultaneously has accomplished so much at the highest level of
scientific research and yet invested considerable energy in advancing the
education for students at any level of their development."
Gates is known for
his groundbreaking work in supersymmetry and supergravity, areas closely related
to superstring theory. In 1983, he co-authored the seminal book
"Superspace or 1001 Lessons in Supersymmetry. He also is widely known for
his work popularizing science, promoting the importance of research and science
education and enlightening young people on the wonder and opportunities of
careers in science and engineering. In 2007, the American Association for the
Advancement of Science honored Gates with its Public Understanding of Science
and Technology Award.
from my astonishment, I was ecstatic when informed by the chancellor that I
have been selected for this recognition.
It is an enormous honor to be appointed a Regents Professor," Gates said. "I plan to continue to model the excellence
of the USM in all venues, pursue unique research directions, and work as
broadly as possible with students."
month, President Obama named Gates as one of this year's recipients of
the National Medal of Science. The National Medal of Science and the National
Medal of Technology and Innovation are the highest honors bestowed by the
United States Government upon scientists, engineers, and inventors. This year's
12 Medal of Science and 11 Medal of Technology and Innovation recipients were
scheduled to receive their awards at a White House ceremony during the winter.
The appointment of Regents Professor comes with a modest monetary
award, which can be used for travel, research or publication costs, or
personnel and equipment costs.
Gates is an incomparable scientific ambassador for his university, state and
nation, and richly deserves this honor," said University of Maryland President
Wallace Loh. "He combines the accomplishments of a groundbreaking theoretical
physicist with the gifts of a captivating educator and mentor. His work stands
as an exemplar of the power and wonder of education, science and math."
When appointed a Regents Professor, the faculty member is asked to
take on several duties, including continued participation in the advisement
and/or instruction of undergraduate students. The Regents Professor presents
annually a public lecture at a USM institution and participates in other
scholarly activities that advance the USM and its institutions. These may
include curriculum development (formal or informal courses), faculty
development, citizen outreach, or organizational enhancement.
Contact: Mike Lurie