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Department of Physics

Private Support for the Department of Physics

Physics Building

The Department of Physics has grown and changed tremendously in recent years.  We are growing in quantity and quality by many measures such as student enrollments and extramural research funding.  According to US News & World Report our graduate program moved from 44th to 29th between 2002 to 26th in 2010 (their most recent ranking).  This unprecedented rise is one we are committed to continue.

Looking toward the future, we have an expanded vision of what our department can hope to become.  We intend to further improve our ability to attract the highest quality people to our institution, as faculty members, postdoctoral scholars and graduate and undergraduate students.  We  thus can achieve even higher levels of scientific productivity and leadership.  We want to bring our instruction to a higher level of excellence. We want to make our physical environment one conducive to the sharing of ideas, thereby facilitating new discoveries.  We aspire to become one of the elite physics departments of the world.

To reach these goals we are relying on both public and private support.  Donations will support our core activities in ways that state and federal funds cannot, and allow us to compete with the very best departments, all of which can count on private support to maintain and enhance their programs. 

We are very grateful for the support from alumni, parents, foundations, corporations, faculty, staff and friends of physics.  The amounts are substantial, totaling over $2 million dollars in the past 3 years.  

Even donations that would be a small fraction of $2 million can make a big difference.  The majority of our donations are targeted for specific research programs. Perhaps you would like to contribute to a graduate fellowship, instructional laboratory upgrades, or the renovation of our atrium.  Perhaps you would like to provide an unrestricted gift.  Such gifts allow us to capitalize on emerging opportunities, and to direct funds to where they are needed most.  

If you are interested in helping us reach our goals, please see our Giving to Physics page.  You may also wish to contact Department of Physics Chairman Andreas Albrecht at (530) 752-5989 (  or Director of Development for the College of Letters and Sciences Shari Kawelo via email at or by phone at (530) 754-2225.