Three Wesleyan faculty members received endowed professorships for the 2013-14 academic year.
Tsampikos Kottos, associate professor of physics, is being honored with the Douglas J. and Midge Bowen Bennet Chair. The Bennet Chair, endowed in 2007, is awarded for a five-year term to “a newly tenured associate professor exhibiting exceptional achievement and evidence of future promise.”
Ashraf Rushdy, professor of English, professor of African-American studies, is being awarded the Benjamin L. Waite Professorship in English Language, first appointed in 1911.
Philip Scowcroft, professor of mathematics, is receiving the Edward Burr Van Vleck Professorship in Mathematics. The Van Vleck chair was created in 1982.
“Please join me congratulating Tsampikos, Ashraf, and Philip in recognition of their impressive intellectual achievements and institutional contributions,” said Rob Rosenthal, provost and vice president for academic affairs.
Tsampikos Kottos arrived at Wesleyan in 2005, having earned his B.Sc., M.Sc. and Ph.D., all in Physics, from the University of Crete, in Greece. Tsampikos develops models and theories of mesoscopic systems, those systems that are too small to be part of the macroscopic world and are described by the laws of quantum mechanics. His work, which is at the forefront of his field, has implications for designing and building nano-devices, quantum dots and atomic traps. Kottos has been recognized for his efforts with a number of grants from the National Science Foundation, the Air Force and the German National Science Foundation. In 2007, he was a visiting fellow at the Newton Institute in Cambridge, U.K. and was awarded the International Pnevmatikos Award, given biannually to an outstanding researcher in nonlinear phenomena. He is a prolific scientist and has published 45 peer-reviewed papers since coming to Wesleyan. Last year, he published a paper, resulting from a collaborative effort with Fred Ellis, highlighted by the editors of Physics Review A as exceptional research.