September 28, 2006
Director of Media Relations

AMHERST, Mass.—Laura Newburgh, a graduate student in physics at Columbia University, will give a talk titled “Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about Graduate School, and the Universe, in Less than One Hour” at 4:45 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 5, in Merrill Science Room 211. Refreshments will be served at 4:15 p.m. Sponsored by the physics department at Amherst College, the talk is free and open to the public.

“The discovery of perturbations in the cosmic microwave background (CMB) ushered in a new era of experimental cosmology,” Newburgh says. “One of the most exciting new signatures in the CMB is that of polarization, which is already informing the time scales of reionization, and could possibly help probe inflationary time scales in the universe, beginning about 10-43 seconds after the big bang. The Q/U imaging experiment (QUIET) will probe this signature with unprecedented accuracy and help inform next-generation experiments.”

In addition to discussing QUIET, Newburgh will discuss the process of applying, choosing and attending graduate school, with the hope of clarifying the process.