December 1, 2021
Nadia Fomin concentrates on the fundamentals. In her research, that’s the building blocks of matter: nucleons and their constituents, quarks. In her commitment to the nuclear physics community, that’s encouraging scientific collaboration and creating student opportunities. For her dedication to physics in the South, the Southeastern Section of the American Physical Society (SESAPS) awarded her the Francis G. Slack at the 2021 meeting.
Nadia Fomin accepts the 2021 Francis G. Slack Award
from SESAPS Chair Mohammad Waseem Ahmed
The Slack Award recognizes scientists who work unselfishly to raise the region’s stature in physics through research, university service, outreach, and support for organizations and conferences. Fomin, an associate professor who joined the physics faculty in 2013, has thrown her energy into these endeavors from the outset. She volunteered to take leadership roles in SESAPS and the American Physical Society Division of Nuclear Physics (APS-DNP) and was elected to the SESAPS executive committee her first semester at UT. She hosted the section’s 2018 meeting and in 2020 put together a virtual meeting so the conference wouldn’t be cancelled during the pandemic. She organized the 2019 National Nuclear Physics Summer School, where students and postdocs from across the country came to Knoxville to learn about the opportunities in nuclear physics and where the field is headed. Two of her students won Department of Energy Graduate Student Research awards in 2020 for their work with her group. Recognizing the strength of diversity, Fomin sought and won funding for NPET (Nuclear Physics in Eastern Tennessee), a project that launched this year and encourages undergraduate students from minority serving institutions to pursue nuclear physics through mentorship from UT and Oak Ridge National Laboratory physicists.
Professor Mohammad Waseem Ahmed (NCCU) is the current SESAPS chair and presented Fomin with the award. The citation reads:"For excellence in service to physics in the Southeast, through her extensive efforts to enhance student training opportunities, her work with SESAPS, and her organization of conferences and workshops. In addition to training several undergraduate students herself, Dr. Fomin has created a program for undergraduates from minority serving institutions to be mentored by University of Tennessee faculty and Oak Ridge National Laboratory scientific staff. As an assistant professor, Dr. Fomin joined the SESAPS Executive Committee, and later was in the Chair line for SESAPS. In the latter role, she worked to add a student member to the SESAPS Executive Committee. She has also served on the program committee of the APS DNP and the APS council. Dr. Fomin helped organize several workshops and summer schools, including the 2020 virtual SESAPS meeting and the National Nuclear Physics Summer School in 2019."