The CAP receives $300,000 donation to its Foundation to expand its annual lecture tour

A $300,000 donation supports the CAP Lecture Tour to foster inclusive physics education and raise awareness of physics research and its impacts among Canada’s youth

Ottawa, Ontario, 2023 November 21. The Canadian Association of Physicists (CAP) is excited to announce that it has recently received a $300,000 donation to the CAP Foundation to support the annual CAP Lecture Tour. This generous endowment will allow the CAP to expand the long-running lecture tour to include high school and CEGEP students across Canada, furthering its objectives to raise awareness of physics research and its impacts among Canada’s youth, and to foster inclusive physics education.

The CAP Lecture Tour, which has been running since 1991, is an influential and energizing event for undergraduate students in physics departments across Canada. It features presentations that span a wide range of current topics in physics, from academia to industry. The goals of the lecture tour are to share the excitement of current developments in physics with students across the country, to promote and celebrate the study of physics in Canada, and to enhance collaborations between the CAP and Canadian physics departments.

The donor, who prefers to remain anonymous, has acknowledged and applauded the strong brand of the CAP Lecture Tour and its aim of reaching students at university departments that tend to be smaller, remote, and underserved. The endowment will allow the CAP to continue running the lecture tour in perpetuity, and ensure that equity, diversity, and inclusivity principles continue to be reviewed and updated so that regions across Canada can participate actively and benefit from high-quality physics talks.

“On behalf of the CAP Foundation, I am delighted to express our sincere gratitude for the profoundly generous and significant endowment that we have received, dedicated to the CAP Lecture Tour,” says Manu Paranjape, Chair of the CAP Foundation, “This donation secures the CAP Lecture Tour for the foreseeable future. The CAP Foundation is committed to ensuring that the Lecture Tour remains a cornerstone project within the CAP, fostering a passion for physics among young students, particularly those at the high school level.”

Starting in 2024, the CAP, working with its national network of teachers, will provide content specifically aimed at high school and CEGEP students. The lecture content will be developed to align with physics curricula, and talks will also be made available as online resources for secondary schools. Engaging with students at this level is crucial as secondary school is where students start to consider their interests and talents, and decide whether to apply for university studies and which field to pursue.

Gwen Grinyer, National Coordinator of the CAP Lecture Tour comments that, “On behalf of the regional coordinators for the CAP Lecture Tour, we are truly grateful to have received this donation in support of our mission to promote and celebrate physics in Canada and are honoured to be able to continue to share all of the exciting research of our members with students from across the country.”

The CAP is currently finalizing speaker nominations for the 2024 lecture tour and all further information will be added to the lecture tour webpage.