This year, the School of Physics and Astronomy awarded their inaugural prizes for outstanding contribution to outreach and public engagement to students at a prize-giving ceremony at the annual Chaos Student Ball.
The winners of the prizes were Jenifer Millard (undergraduate) and Peri Jones (postgraduate). Postgraduate student Matthew Allen was also highly commended for his work in this area.
Details of the prizes are given below:
The Marconi Prize (undergraduate students) Awarded to: Jenifer Millard. Jeni is currently in her third year of her MPhys degree at Cardiff University. She has been part of our undergraduate role model scheme (STARS) helping to deliver the Universe in the Classroom project and carrying out inspirational hands on astronomy activities in primary schools.
In particular, Jeni has worked closely with St Joseph’s School including helping them to install a telescope in their own yard and running star parties with children and parents, featured in local ITV news. Perhaps most memorably, she represented the School of Physics and Astronomy on the BBC Radio quiz The Third Degree with her supervisor Professor Steve Eales. Not only did she single handedly get the win for the student team, she also outwitted her supervisor in a special relativity calculation in front of a hundred people.
Her passion and dedication for inspiring and engaging with the public is demonstrated through the sheer breadth and reach of activities, from primary school kids to adults, from public lectures to podcasts to star camps.
Winner of the Josephson Prize: Peri Jones
The Josephson Prize (postgraduate students) Awarded to: Peri Jones. Not only does Peri unfailingly and regularly contribute to all standard open day and staff-student enrichment activities, but she goes above and beyond to raise the profile of physicists and Cardiff University, through active involvement in an impressive range of public engagement events.
To name a few, she has participated in Cancer Research UK public open days to raise the awareness of novel physics techniques in the diagnosis of cancer; presented Universe-in-a box to hundreds of Cardiff primary school children and spoken at the National Eisteddfod to thousands of people about astronomy.
She has appeared on BBC Radio Wales’ Science Cafe and in ~10 episodes of the Welsh version of How the Universe Works on S4C. She also ran a double act to give live English and Welsh news coverage of the National Museum Eclipse event in 2015 and many more. Peri has the combined attributes of being an excellent bilingual communicator and having a natural and infectious enthusiasm for all science.
We are very proud to have these students work with us in engaging in the community.