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Becoming a Golden Hawk means more than just cheering on our (really good) varsity teams – it means being a student who cares about your community, who works hard in the classroom, and who takes advantage of all the learning opportunities that can happen outside the classroom, too.

Greg Hovesen (BSc '21)

GregThe Physics program at Laurier was definitely the right choice for me. The small class sizes allowed for a comfortable lecture atmosphere as well as the opportunity to create excellent relationships with my professors. The faculty were very approachable and helpful, whenever I needed guidance or even just to chat. I always felt like I was more than just a number. This comfort allowed me to truly embrace the Physics program. I was amazed that I was able to study mechanics and thermodynamics as well astrophysics and quantum physics. This degree is more than just learning physics and lab work. You also gain a strong understanding of computer science, math and engineering. One of the best experiences was working with Dr. Haranas. He truly supported me and cared about my success. I was very fortunate to have this strong relationship with him and with his guidance I completed a research paper on the effects of a logarithmic correction to Newtonian Potential in space in my final semester. Another professor who I believe set me up for success was Dr. Wartak. Just like Dr. Haranas, he was always very approachable and kind when I asked questions or for clarification regarding course content. I believe that all professors in the Physics department want nothing but success for their students. I am thankful for the excellent education I received from the Physics department at Laurier. It has helped me become a valuable member of a professional racing car team. I also feel well prepared to pursue further education in Data Analytics and to work towards my Masters in Science.

John Spry (BSc '20)

"Throughout my years at Laurier, I was astounded by the variety of topics one was able to study, whether it be astrophysics, optics, thermodynamics, or even quantum mechanics. One thing I appreciated was how hospitable the professors were, easy to communicate with and explained difficult concepts quite clearly. These relationships aided in my development not only as a student, but as an individual as well. During my second and third year at Laurier, I was fortunate enough to participate in the FOSSA research conference. This allowed me to work interdependently with Dr. Haranas and showcase the research we had been working on, whilst also gaining useful skills for future work. The skills and knowledge acquired at Laurier truly helped my professional growth. I’m grateful to have chosen Laurier’s Physic program as it provided me with insights on which occupation to pursue and not pursue."

Margie Christ (BSc, BMus '20)

margie-christ.jpg"I loved the flexibility I had at Laurier; not many places will be accommodating enough to allow you to do two degrees in two faculties simultaneously! I really appreciated the small class sizes in the physics department, it allowed me to develop good relationships with my professors and helped me tailor my education to fit my goals. Dr. Haranas stands out as a professor; I took many courses with him and his encouragement and guidance were always wonderful. Dr. Ghose is another incredible educator, after taking her quantum computing course I fell in love with the subject. I did a fourth year research project with her and this opened the door for my graduate studies at UW in quantum information. My years at Laurier were an excellent experience and I cannot recommend it highly enough!"

Merry Kamel (BSc '20)

Merry Kamel"Laurier has allowed me to develop intellectual resilience through the opportunities it has granted me. I was able to communicate easily in a warm environment with my peers, teaching assistants and professors. I was also able to grow outside of the classroom by getting involved on campus and while working with professors to participate in research throughout my degree. As well, the professors at Laurier are distinguished by their commitment to foster professional and intellectual excellence within their students. Particularly, Dr. Ioannis has made his lectures very engaging while also ensuring his students become confident with the material. He was also able to deliver the material in an engaging manner while aiming for the success of his students. The collaborative environment made my time at Laurier a very unique and healthy experience and I am very thankful to the faculty that granted me the skills and knowledge needed for my professional growth. Overall, I enjoyed studying in a collegial and stimulating learning environment that offers endless opportunities!"

Devon McLeod (BSc '20)

mcleod.jpgregulatory compliance officer, Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs

"Laurier provided me with a strong framework to build a network and create strong relationships with faculty members. These relationships have enabled me to learn and grow outside of the classroom while working with professors to participate in research throughout my degree and finish my degree with a few publications. These publications substantially increased my resume while the research has taught me what it’s like to apply classroom skills to real-world problems. Most importantly however I have been able to develop many essential skills for my future in the workforce."

Justin Moffatt (BSc '19)

justin-moffatt.jpg"A great benefit of the Physics program was that it created the foundation for further exploration into many science- and technology-related topics; astrophysics, optical physics, condensed matter physics, electronic engineering, computer science, and pure mathematics are just some. After exploring many topics in my first year, I had the academic tools to expand into any direction, allowing me to construct a more personalized degree. I personally really enjoyed being able to access computer science courses throughout my entire time at Laurier. It became very easy to develop personal relationships with many professors and lab coordinators, which eventually lead to learning and working with them one-on-one. The personal insight, assistance, and sharing of current research was invaluable."

Aron Weingarten (BSc '19)

aron-weingarten.jpgspecial student, Wayne State University  

"I enrolled in Mechanics for the Life Sciences as well as Thermodynamics and Waves for the Life Sciences at Laurier in order to satisfy the prerequisite course requirements from the medical school that I was accepted to. After completing my Psychology and Neuroscience degree at Dalhousie, I was quite unenthusiastic and hesitant at the prospect of studying physics. From the first day of class, Dr. Haranas was exceptionally kind and attuned to any of his students’ nerves regarding the course. I felt so comfortable asking questions and I enjoyed engaging in physics-related discussions even beyond the scope of the course that it became a regular occurrence which I looked forward to. Both Dr. Haranas and Dr. Ahmed were able to simplify course content, making it enjoyable and easy to learn physics without prior knowledge. Their demeanor and teaching skills facilitated my success. The course content was presented through a life science/biology lens which allowed me to gain a better appreciation for the underlying role physics plays in the study of medicine and the human body. It is without question that I am better suited to study medicine after having taken these courses." 

Gerard Tatel (BSc '18)

tatel.jpggraduate student, University of Ottawa

"My early years at Laurier were filled with engaging courses and labs, which prepared me for my latter years and allowed me to have my foot in the door to participate in research and extra projects with caring and devoted professors. I acquired an understanding of the dedication research takes and have developed the necessary patience it sometimes takes. Throughout my undergrad, I was given the opportunity to explore many branches of physics beyond in-class courses doing research and projects for professors Li Wei (fibre optics and photonics), M.S. Wartak (plasmonics) and Ioannis Haranas (astrophysics). These opportunities led to my interest and passion to pursue further education. After graduating, I continued as a research assistant to finish up the publication for IEEE Journal of Lightwave Technology, and I am set to start my Master of Science in Physics."

Cameron Naraine (BSc '18)

naraine.jpggraduate student, McMaster University and National Research Council of Canada 

"At the end of my third year at Laurier, I was invited by Professor Li Wei to participate as a research assistant in her fibre optics lab. My project focused on Mach-Zehnder interferometers for optical filtering and was eventually published in IEEE Journal of Lightwave Technology. I also worked as a teaching assistant under Professor Hasan Shodiev and contributed to astrophysics research efforts under the supervision of Professor Ioannis Haranas. These experiences allowed and encouraged me to pursue further education in a research-based PhD program in Engineering Physics at both McMaster University and the National Research Council of Canada. Without the support of the faculty and community of the Laurier Physics program, I would not have been able to learn about or participate in my chosen field of work as much as I have to date. I have everyone in Laurier Physics who has helped me along the way to thank for allowing me to build my career and discover the best version of me."

Connor Martz (BSc '17)

martz.jpggraduate student, University of Waterloo

"During my time at Laurier, I took a keen interest in various projects. Firstly, I worked along side Professor Li Wei in her fibre optics laboratory where we received a research grant from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada to design a tunable multimode fibre-optic sensor. We published a paper on our results in the IEEE Photonics Journal. I then began my undergraduate research project where I was mentored by Professor Ioannis Haranas. I presented this research in a poster at the annual FOSSA research conference at Laurier and we published a paper in Advances in Mathematical Physics. I was also one of the authors of a publication in Astrophysics and Space Science, titled 'The Poynting-Robertson effect in the Newtonian potential with a Yukawa correction.' After graduating, I went on to pursue my dream of studying astrophysics in graduate school at the University of Waterloo, where I studied galaxy clusters using the Chandra X-ray Observatory."

Sheldon Van Middelkoop (BSc '17)

van-middelkoop.jpggraduate student, University of Western Ontario

"My first year at Laurier threw me by surprise and exposed me to many things I hadn’t done before, from electronics to math proofs and even computer programming. This breadth of areas sparked many interests in me that I didn’t know I had before. I began to see connections between these fields of study that I wanted to pursue. In my third year I had Professor Ioannis Haranas, who was very open to new ideas and wanted to take students on to help him in his research. We worked on papers (that were later published in peer-reviewed journals) in modified Newtonian gravity and the Poynting-Robertson effect. This was exactly what I was looking for; I was finally contributing to science. I also took on a fourth-year thesis project with Professor Ian Hamilton on using computer simulations on Carbon Quantum dots. This joined several of my passions: physics, technology and computer science. I completed my Master of Science in experimental and computation condensed matter physics at the University of Western Ontario and am currently finishing my Master of Engineering."


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