SLAC Today is available online at:
http://today.slac.stanford.edu

In this issue:
From the Director: Mentor a Summer Student!
Steven Chu to Speak at Stanford Monday
Beam Dynamics Workshop at SLAC Wraps Up Today
New Fitness for Duty Policy Begins April 5

SLAC Today

Friday - March 5, 2010

From the Director:
Mentor a Summer Student!

(Photo - Persis Drell)
(Photo by Harvey Lynch.)

Where did it all start? For most of us doing science today, it started when we were inspired by a great teacher or mentor. Perhaps the mentor was a postdoc, a graduate student, or a senior scientist who influenced the way we do science.

Also, most of us who have gone into science learned about it first in classes and in books. But then we all had to learn that "boots on the ground science" is very different from classes. In my case, even though I had grown up around physicists all my life, my first summer in graduate school was transformational. It was the first time that I worked in a research lab and I saw what it was really like to do science in the lab. I had an excellent mentor (a senior postdoc by the name of Steve Chu) and it really had a huge influence on my physics career.

At SLAC, we have two eight-week summer mentorship programs in science and engineering: the Summer Undergraduate Laboratory Internship and the Science Teacher and Researcher program. Both run from mid-June to mid-August. The goal of these programs is to bring in selected science and engineering undergraduates and a few science teachers to learn science by working on a project under the mentorship of a SLAC scientist or engineer. Typically, these summer students and teachers work on a sub-project of one of the bigger projects at the lab. In the course of working on this project, they learn not only how to do science, but also how to talk, teach and write about it.  Read more...

Steven Chu to Speak at Stanford Monday

U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu, a Stanford Nobel laureate, will speak on campus Monday about energy innovation and education.

Stanford's Green Alliance for Innovative Action, a student organization, will host the event in Memorial Auditorium from noon to 1 p.m. Free tickets are available for the event, which is open to Stanford students, faculty and staff. The talk will also be webcast live on the alliance's Web site.

Read more from Stanford Report...

Future Light Sources Workshop Wraps Up Today

Workshop attendees enjoy continental breakfast in the Panofsky breezeway. (Photo by Julie Karceski.)

Earlier this week, accelerator and light source physicists from around the world arrived at SLAC for the 48th International Committee for Future Accelerators Advanced Beam Dynamics Workshop, focused on accelerator-based lights sources. The recent success of SLAC's Linac Coherent Light Source, which has exceeded many of its technical design parameters, has generated lots of interest in future sources.

"We've got great representation from just about every light source in the world," said John Galayda, event organizer and director of construction for the LCLS. "It indicates a growing interest in the capabilities of light sources."

The conference, which started Monday and concludes today, offered both talks and collaboration opportunities. Participants from every aspect of light source physics and technology, ranging from diagnostics to X-ray optics, have come together to discuss what lies ahead in their field. The schedule also includes a special workshop on X-band technology for free electron lasers.

"This has been a great workshop and many new ideas have been tossed about," said Tor Raubenheimer, the head of accelerator research at SLAC. "It is hoped that some of these will lead to future light sources much as the SLAC LCLS, which emerged out of a similar workshop held at SLAC 18 years ago. Of course, we hope that this time it takes less than 18 years!"

Today the workshop will conclude with summary presentations from each of the working groups. The agenda can be found online. 

New Fitness for Duty Policy Begins April 5

On April 5, 2010, SLAC will implement a new Fitness for Duty policy designed to ensure that all employees have a safe and healthy work environment. Employees who are not fit for duty present a health or safety hazard to themselves, to the SLAC community and potentially to the public. This policy applies to all SLAC staff as a condition of employment. It establishes procedures for evaluating an employee who is having observable difficulty performing his/her work in a safe manner or is posing a direct safety threat to him/herself or others.  Read more...

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