Among 70 undergraduates registering for a physics degree at the University of Leicester later this month will be four students who have already proved themselves outstanding in top international competition.
The students, from the Republic of Moldova, Bulgaria, Azerbaijan and Indonesia, are all medal holders from the XXXI International Physics Olympiad, held at the University of Leicester in July 2000, and were subsequently successful in applying for IPhO 2000 Scholarships to enable them to join the MPhys degree course in September 2001.
The IPhO 2000 scholarships are jointly funded by the British Physics Olympiad Committee and the University. Four have been awarded for 2001 entry and already one for 2002, which will benefit a student from Finland. If further funding can be found it is hoped the scheme will be continued in future years and extended to other leading UK universities.
The annual Physics Olympiad brings together the world's most talented young physicists to pit their mathematical and experimental skills against their counterparts from other nations. The XXXI Physics Olympiad attracted 350 top Physics students from 63 nations the largest ever entry for the competition. Those that reached the Leicester finals had already passed a rigorous series of examinations in their own countries.
At the University of Leicester, the four young physicists will be joining one of Britain's leading physics and astronomy departments, with an innovative teaching programme backed up by world-class research in astrophysics, nanostructure physics, planetary exploration and magnetosheric and plasma physics. An annual research and contract income of over £4 million is among the highest for any UK university physics department.
Professor Ken Pounds, Head of the Department of Physics and Astronomy said: We are delighted that this new scholarship fund, which was set up to mark the success of the International Physics Olympiad held here in Leicester, will enable talented students from around the world to study at the University. Subject to future funding a continuation of this initiative, extended across the sector, would offer the exciting prospect of an annual flow of these outstanding young scientists completing their education in the UK.
Note to editors:
The four students are:
For further information or to arrange contact with the students please contact Professor Ken Pounds, Head of Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester, tel +44 (0)116 252 3509; fax +44 (0)116 252 2770; email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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