Departmental honors are earned by seniors in the spring semester. Students discuss their project with the chair and make the decision to seek honors and decide on the project they will submit. A committee of faculty members listens to the presentation and ask questions of the student before making the decision to bestow honors. The faculty also determines which students will be inducted into the physics honor society, Sigma Pi Sigma.
The department also bestows several student awards. Each spring the physics and astronomy faculty gather to decide who will receive special recognition for their research work by receiving one of several awards. Below are links to descriptions of these awards with a list of the recipients by year.
The Frank Durrell Enck Memorial Prize in Physics was established in 1975 and is awarded to a physics major whose work in the department has earned special recognition. Income of endowment established by alumni, faculty, students and friends in memory of Frank D. Enck, Ph.D., Chairman of the Department of Physics, 1961-1973.
The Joseph R. Holzinger Astronomy Award is presented to a graduating senior who has had continued outstanding participation in the Astronomy Program.
John Kershner Scholarships are awarded only to students of good and regular standing and are determined by proficiency in mathematics, physics and astronomy. The selection of the students to be entitled to the scholarship is made by the professor or professors in charge of the departments.
The Michael Albert Lewis Memorial prize in Physics was established in 1975 and is to be awarded to freshmen whose performance in introductory physics has been outstanding.
The Michael J. Mumma Prize in Physics and Astronomy was established in 2000. Selection of the recipient is based on outstanding scholastic achievement, citizenship, community leadership, and superior potential for future contributions to physics and/or astronomy. The selection is announced by October 1 of the recipient's senior year in order to strengthen the recipient's application to an approved graduate program in physics or astronomy.
The Rawnsley Science Prize for Excellence in Science goes to that senior who, by his/her actions and attitude while a student in the sciences, indicates that he/she will use the scientific knowledge gained at Franklin and Marshall College to best advantage. The Rawnsley Prize for excellence in science in general, and not in a particular discipline. Therefore it is awarded to the student who is most appropriate from the science departments which include biology, chemistry, geology, physics and astronomy and psychology.
Clare Boothe Luce Scholarships are awarded by the physics and astronomy department. These scholarships are sponsored by the Clare Boothe Luce Program. The program supports four Clare Boothe Luce Undergraduate Scholars.