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Janet Tate standing in her lab with equipment

Physics professor named OSU Alumni Association Distinguished Professor

Physics Professor Janet Tate

Physics Professor Janet Tate has been selected by the Faculty Recognition and Awards Committee as the 2015 recipient of the OSU Alumni Association Distinguished Professor Award. The Award recognizes a faculty member for superior academic performance in both scholarship and teaching, professional renown in the U.S. and the world and service to the University and to the public.

Tate will receive the award at an invitation-only dinner September 15 and then be recognized publicly at OSU's annual University Day celebration September 21.

A globally renowned materials physicist, Tate was recently named the first Dr. Russ and Dolores Gorman Faculty Scholar for her strong record of innovative research with practical impact. Her research focuses on the structural, transport and optical properties of transparent semiconductors and photovoltaic materials, with the objective of improving electronic devices such as solar cells, which use semiconductors to maximize collection of light and the extraction of energy.

"I heartily congratulate Janet on this well-deserved recognition. The College of Science is extremely proud to have a faculty of Janet's stature and caliber in its midst. She is not only committed to excellent research, but also to education and student success at all levels," said Sastry G. Pantula, Dean of the College of Science.

Tate was one of seven international scientists and former Technical University of Munich (TUM) research alumni awarded the title of “TUM Ambassador” for 2014. Tate’s research on transparent and photovoltaic materials has been supported by prestigious National Science Foundation (NSF) grants. She and her collaborators have presently been awarded grants from NSF and the US Department of Energy to support their research on designing the next generation of semiconductors.

Tate was instrumental in developing Paradigms in Physics, an NSF-funded program that has been in the Department of Physics at OSU for more than 17 years. This nationally recognized, innovative curriculum approach teaches students to think like a physicist and is regarded as a standard in physics education nationwide.

She currently chairs the American Physical Society’s Committee on Careers and Professional Development, which steers the national effort towards linking physics research with industry. Tate is also very active in encouraging diversity in science and is leading her department to host the national conference of undergraduate women in physics in 2016.

Originally from South Africa, Tate holds a Ph.D. from Stanford University and has been at OSU since 1989.

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