T. Franklin Waddell, a doctoral candidate in mass communications at Penn State, conducted a huge study — we’re talking a study with thousands of participants — and never needed to schedule lab space or arrange the purchase and delivery of 2,300 bagels and a few hundred gallons of orange juice and water.
When you write about Penn State research, you have to be ready for a lot of knowledge and passion, maybe some controversy, and occasionally a big word or two that you pretend you understand during the interview, but immediately try to find its definition on your iPhone as you run back to the office to start the story. Not that this has ever happened to me.
Penn State’s museums are full of the majestic, the sublime, and the awe-inspiring. There, on display for all of us to see, are artifacts of science and objects of art that remind us of humanity’s ability to turn skill and knowledge into things of beauty and understanding.
These museums are also filled with something else that, for the most part, only human beings can produce and that, without a doubt, only human beings can appreciate: the really, really weird.
Just in time for Halloween, I’d like to take us on a trip to some of Penn State’s museums and find the best examples of Weird Penn State. As turns out, finding the really, really weird is really, really easy.
When David Joseph Bohm arrived at Penn State in 1936, he was taking his first academic baby step on a journey that would place him in the pantheon of the greatest theoretical physicists of the 20th century.
Bohm, a son of a Wilkes-Barre furniture store owner who also served as the town’s part-time rabbi’s assistant, would later work with some of the leading minds in physics. He studied under Robert Oppenheimer at the University of California, Berkeley. Later, he was a protege of Albert Einstein, working closely with him at Princeton University. The partnership between the two was so close that some scientists speculated that Einstein considered the Penn State grad to be his successor. Continue reading Penn State’s Hidden Treasures: David Bohm’s Path of Infinite Potential→