AAPT: American Association of Physics Teachers

AAPT Member Spotlight

Meet Benjamin

For me, physics has always been about doing experiments. I’ve always loved discovering how the universe works by building, tinkering, and measuring. That process of discovery helps make my life fulfilling and wondrous; the fact that it’s my job is just an added bonus. Early on in my training as a physicist, I had the chance to teach as an undergraduate course mentor and as a graduate student teaching assistant. I discovered that sharing that sense of wonder with others is just as fulfilling for me as actually doing physics experiments.

In the middle of my time as an experimental physics graduate student, I started to seriously consider being a physics education researcher (aka, a PER person). I wanted to combine the personal fulfillment of teaching with the personal fulfillment of discovering how to teach better. I went to my first Summer AAPT meeting around that time. There I discovered a community of physicists who were as excited as I was, or more so, about physics teaching and learning. It was wonderous! I got very close to switching into PER as a graduate student, but ultimately, and with the support and advice of my mentors, I decided to finish graduate school as a “traditional” experimental physicist.




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