Nobel Laureate Donna Strickland will join UCF College of Optics and Photonics graduates for a live online Q&A session Saturday after their virtual commencement ceremony, and the public is invited to watch.
Strickland is renowned as one of the world’s leading pioneers in the field of ultra-fast lasers. Her research with French physicist Gérard Mourou led to the creation of high-intensity, ultrashort laser pulses resulting in several industrial and medical applications, including Lasik eye surgery and advances in industrial machining.
The professor at the University of Waterloo in Canada became only the third woman in 117 years to earn the Nobel Prize in physics.
In 2018, the professor at the University of Waterloo in Canada became only the third woman in 117 years to earn the Nobel Prize in physics. She is a past president of the Optical Society of America and a friend and colleague to several UCF faculty members, including Dean Emeritus Eric Van Stryland, also a past president of OSA. Van Stryland invited Strickland to participate in a live Zoom session on Saturday, and she immediately accepted.
“I am super-excited for our college graduates to have the opportunity to speak one-on-one with Nobel Laureate Dr. Donna Strickland,” says David Hagan, interim dean of the College of Optics and Photonics. “As a leading member of the optics community and the first woman to with a Nobel Prize in Physics since 1963, Dr. Strickland is an inspiration to us all. Her participation in our college’s commencement celebrations adds a bright silver lining to the cloud cast on our regular ceremony by COVID-19.”
The college’s virtual ceremony begins at 9 a.m. on Saturday, May 2, and will be shown on UCF’s Facebook page and YouTube channel. Strickland’s interactive session with graduates will follow at approximately 9:45 a.m. and will include invited faculty, academic leaders and current students. The public is invited to watch live from either https://www.youtube.com/CREOLatUCF or https://youtu.be/uAmA0ciflnA. A recorded version of the session will be available later on UCF’s YouTube channel.
All of UCF’s colleges will hold virtual ceremonies at separate times on Saturday. UCF’s traditional commencement ceremonies will be rescheduled when it is safe to do so.