(EDWARDSVILLE, Ill.) Christopher Sorensen, University Distinguished Professor in the Departments of Physics and Chemistry at Kansas State University, will be the 12th William C. Shaw Memorial Lecturer on Dec. 5 at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.
Speaking about “Fire, Fractals and the Divine Proportion,” Sorenson will appear at 7:30 p.m. that Wednesday in the theater of SIUE’s Dunham Hall. The Shaw Lecture has been presented by the SIUE Department of Physics since its inception in the 1980s. Admission is free and open to the public, but seating is limited. Tickets will be distributed at the door beginning at 6:45 p.m.
Sorensen, who also holds the University Distinguished Teaching Scholar Chair at KSU, researches particulate systems and soft matter physics. He has written more than 210 papers and holds five patents. In 2003, he won the David Sinclair Award of the American Association Aerosol Research for his work on aerosol fractal aggregates and light scattering, and he is currently serving as president of that organization.
Earlier this year, Sorensen was named the CASE/Carnegie Foundation National Professor of the Year for doctoral granting institutions. He also has won many teaching awards at KSU, and has introduced the “New Studio” method for instruction, integration of readings of the great scientists into the lowest-level, non-STEM physics course, and a summer workshop for teenage girls to give them mechanical skills relevant to science and engineering.
A native of Omaha, Sorensen received a bachelor of science in physics in 1969 at the University of Nebraska. After a tour of duty in Vietnam with the U. S. Army, Sorensen earned a doctorate in physics in 1977 at the University of Colorado.
Shaw was a dedicated physicist and educator long associated with SIUE, where he was professor of physics from 1959-1973 and professor emeritus until his death in 1977. After his death, Shaw’s family and friends established the William C. Shaw Memorial Fund at SIUE, proceeds from which funded the construction of the Shaw Skylab on the north end of campus, used by students and keeping alive Shaw’s love of teaching astronomy. The lecture series also is supported by the fund. For more information, call the SIUE Department of Physics, (618) 650-2472.