Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012

Have a safe day!

Tuesday, Sept. 11

3:30 p.m.


Wednesday, Sept. 12

3:30 p.m.

4 p.m.
Fermilab Colloquium - One West
Speaker: Jason Steffen, Northwestern University
Title: Exoplanet Science from NASA's Kepler Mission

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a weekly calendar with links to additional information.

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Secon Level 3

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Flags at half-staff

Wilson Hall Cafe

Tuesday, Sept. 11

- Breakfast: All-American breakfast
- Minnesota chicken and rice
- Chicken quesadilla
- Chicken curry
- Smart cuisine: pasta primavera
- California turkey panini
- French-bread pizza
- Refreshing summer salad

Wilson Hall Cafe Menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, Sept. 12
- Stuffed fillet of sole with lemon butter sauce
- Steamed green beans
- Lemon tart with coconut crust

Friday, Sept. 14
- Potato, bacon and cheese soufflé
- Lobster tail with champagne butter sauce
- Spaghetti squash
- Snowpeas
- Strawberry crepes

Chez Leon Menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


Fermilab Today

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CMS Result

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Summer program mentors and coordinators hook students on science

Alex Juern, an intern in Fermilab's Community College Internship Program, presented his poster this summer. His mentor was Damon Brice. Photo: Marge Bardeen, Education Office

Every summer, roughly 90 students participate as interns in one of Fermilab's many summer programs. Now the last of the summer students has departed, and the Fermilab employees who devoted hours of every summer day to mentoring or coordinating interns are returning to their usual workday schedules.

Their value to Fermilab is immeasurable, said Sandra Charles, who administers the TARGET program for high-schoolers.

"The mentors extend a good deal of time and care to the students," she said. "They work on meaningful projects with their interns and give them access to the expertise of the lab's professionals."

Fermilab runs nine summer programs for high-school and undergraduate students. The programs' internship coordinators assign a mentor to each student, selecting tasks from a wide variety of projects. TARGET mentor Molly Anderson, Computing Sector, worked with a high-school student to develop and navigate spreadsheets and databases.

"For most of the interns, it's their first time in a business environment," she said. Her position as mentor allowed her to guide students as they learned about the real-world running of a laboratory.

The students are rewarded with experiences unlike any they have during the school year, and it's just as rewarding for the mentors. Mitch Adamus, AD operations specialist, served as a mentor for the first time this summer, working with a community college student on an anode power supply for NOvA.

"He was a top-notch student – bright and self-motivated," he said. "The students come to us enthused, and we try to nurture that enthusiasm."

Stephen Pordes, PPD scientist, mentored two undergraduates in the SULI program and one high-school teacher, working with them to build a trigger system for a time-projection chamber.

"I've been doing this for 25 years, and I love it," he said. "My aim is to get them to use their intelligence to get things done that can't be found at the end of a book. It's good to expose people to that early."

The exposure pays off.

"Many of the students have become particle physicists," said SULI/IPM co-coordinator Erik Ramberg. "Life as a scientist is open to anyone who wants to pursue it."

And that's the whole idea.

"The bottom line is to hook the students on science research," said Education Office summer program coordinator Carol Angarola.

Once hooked, students have Fermilab internship mentors and coordinators to thank for it.

Leah Hesla

Photo of the Day

Praying mantis in the pink

A praying mantis poses on an amaranthus flower in a garden by 31 Blackhawk. Photo: Ed Dijak, PPD
In Brief

Upcoming tours and lectures for Fermilab employees

Here's your chance to explore CDF, which recorded its final particle collision last September as part of the Tevatron program. Employee-only tours are scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 25, and Thursday, Sept. 27, from noon to 1 p.m. Space is limited, so reserve your spot now by e-mailing Sandra Charles at scharles@fnal.gov.

Also, check out information regarding upcoming Technical Division tours, Behind the Scenes talks and Physics for Everyone lectures.

In the News

It's time to get serious about science

From The Washington Post, Sept. 9, 2012

Some policymakers, including certain senators and members of Congress, cannot resist ridiculing any research project with an unusual title. Their press releases are perhaps already waiting in the drawer, with blanks for the name of the latest scientist being attacked. The hottest topics for ridicule involve sex, exotic animals and bugs.

The champion of mocking science was the late William Proxmire, whose Golden Fleece Awards enlivened dull Senate floor proceedings from 1975 until 1988. His monthly awards became a staple of news coverage. He generated good laughs back home by talking about a "wacko" in a lab coat experimenting with something seemingly stupid. Proxmire did not invent the mad-scientist stereotype, but he did much to popularize it.

The United States may now risk falling behind in scientific discoveries as other countries increase their science funding. We need to get serious about science. In fact, maybe it's time for researchers to fight back, to return a comeback for every punch line.

Read more

Director's Corner

Science and technology review

Fermilab Director
Pier Oddone

Last week we had a three-day science and technology review of laboratory operations. The DOE S&T Review is one of the principal yearly reviews of the laboratory and has a very wide scope, including evaluations of:

  • the quality and significance of recent S&T accomplishments and the merit and feasibility of future plans to maximize scientific opportunities
  • the effectiveness and efficiency of facility operations and of the planning for future facility upgrades
  • the effectiveness of laboratory management in strategic planning, developing core competencies, setting priorities and promoting a culture of safety
  • the leadership and creativity of laboratory scientific and technical staff
  • the quality of our interactions with the scientific community

Listening to the presentations would make any employee of Fermilab proud of the enormous quantity and quality of work the laboratory is doing. Overall, the committee was impressed with our program and had important advice for us in a few areas.

One area where the reviewers felt we could do better is in communicating and working together with the national particle physics community. This is an area that is very important for us, and we take this advice seriously. We have done all our strategic planning with the community's involvement, we implement programs and projects in collaboration with many members of the community, and scientists from more than 100 U.S. institutions collaborate on Fermilab experiments. Still, it was important for us to hear that we could do better in this area, especially as the community looks toward the Snowmass conference in 2013 where the scientific opportunities of the future U.S. program will be discussed.

A second concern of our reviewers was our choice to maintain a full plate of projects and programs, even at the risk of some delays. The committee understood the importance for the laboratory of pursuing multiple projects, but advised us that this strategy is acceptable only if it does not endanger U.S. competitiveness. We currently have a considerable lead over other world regions in all of our projects, but this could change in the future. Vigilance in this area is very important.

The reviewers also recommended that we step up our efforts in providing the simulation framework to allow folks here at Fermilab, as well as our collaborators at universities, to make extensive simulations throughout the development of our projects, from design to analysis. They also advised us on the importance of MicroBooNE, not only because of its potential for revealing interesting physics, but also because demonstrating mastery of liquid-argon time projection chamber technology is so important for the future of LBNE.

Construction Update

Steel work, deck installation progress on IARC building

The steel work and metal deck installation for the future IARC OTE building is well under way. Photo: Cindy Arnold

Barton Malow Construction Company is well under way with the steel work and metal deck installation for the IARC Office, Technical and Education Building. The first phase of the steel work is for Ground Floor West, which will house the main entrance lobby, 175-seat lecture hall, executive conference room and light tech space. Columns for the second- and third-floor office spaces are also quickly going up. Much of this steel structure will remain exposed within the building. While steel work proceeds on the west part of the building, underground foundations and the elevator pit are being completed on the east side in front of CDF.

You can view more photos of IARC construction progress at the IARC OTE Facebook page.


Today's New Announcements

Change in User Office hours

International Folk Dancing returns to Kuhn Village Barn - Sept. 13

Fermilab Arts & Lecture Series: Broadway's Next H!T Musical - Sept. 22

NALWO and Playgroup SciTech Museum visit - Oct. 6

Road D closure - through mid-October

Scottish country dancing returns to Kuhn Village Barn

Martial Arts classes

Walk 2 Run

Outdoor soccer - Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6 p.m.

Professional development courses

Atrium work updates

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