SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION: Newport Corporation: Helping students travel, learn, and network

Spotlight on inspiring the next generation of scientists and business leaders.

One of the skills essential to students preparing for careers in science is the ability to deliver effective technical talks. To encourage the development of public speaking skills, the OSA Foundation (OSAF) and Newport Corporation awarded student travel grants to young scientists whose papers have been accepted for presentation during the 2011 Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics (CLEO), held May 1–6 in Baltimore, MD, USA. The winners each receive a grant of $1,000 USD to help cover the costs of travel and related expenses.

The 2011 Newport Corporation grant recipients are:

  • Kamal Hammani, Université de Bourgogne, France
  • Friederike Junginger, Universität Konstanz, Germany
  • Joseph Kerckhoff, Stanford University, USA
  • Klaus F. Reim, University of Oxford, UK
  • Volker J. Sorger, University of California at Berkeley, USA

Applicants must be undergraduate or graduate students of an educational institution of collegiate grade who are devoting more than half-time to studies within the institution at the time the paper is written. In 2011, papers had to fall within specific research areas that were in accordance with the CLEO 2011 content areas.  The submission categories were Fundamental Science, Science & Innovations, and Applications & Technology. Students could select from numerous subcategories within each main category.

This program was generously established by Newport Corporation through a grant to the OSA Foundation. It is very important to recognize the significance of travel grants, as there is an enormous need on the part of students for financial assistance to help them afford the air fare and other expenses related to conference attendance. Many times, a grant makes the difference between a student’s participation and staying home. When young people attend a technical meeting or conference, they gain the experience of presenting their work outside the walls of their university. Moreover, they begin to establish a network of contacts that can last throughout their careers—proving that $1K can go a very long way!

Understanding the role and promise of student conference attendees, the Newport Corporation sponsors many initiatives to support, recognize and encourage graduate-level students. Once again, they will sponsor a “student lounge” located on the CLEO 2011 exhibit hall. The lounge is a comfortable space that enables students to meet and learn about the conference. Newport Corporation sets a great example for how companies can help students as they learn and transition to professional life.  

Newport Corporation is a leading global supplier of advanced technology products and solutions for Scientific Research, Life & Health Science, Aerospace & Defense, Photovoltaics, Industrial Manufacturing, Semiconductors, and Microelectronics markets. Established in 1969, Newport has over 40 years of industry knowledge and expertise across a broad range of technologies allowing the company to continually deliver innovative products in the areas lasers, photonics instrumentation, sub-micron positioning systems, vibration isolation, optical components and subsystems and precision automation to enhance the capabilities and productivity of its customers' manufacturing, engineering and research applications. In Addition, Newport has built a strong history of partnering with OEM customers delivering solutions from sub assemblies to full solutions including design, testing and manufacturing.

The OSA Foundation (OSAF) was established in 2002 to support philanthropic activities that help further the Optical Society's (OSA) mission by concentrating its efforts on programs that advance youth science education, provide optics and photonics education to underserved populations, provide career and professional development resources and support awards & honors that recognize technical and business excellence. The grants funded by the OSA Foundation are made possible by the generous donations of its supporters as well as the dollar-for-dollar match from OSA. For more information, visit

Uniting more than 106,000 professionals from 134 countries, the Optical Society (OSA) brings together the global optics community through its programs and initiatives. Since 1916 OSA has worked to advance the common interests of the field, providing educational resources to the scientists, engineers and business leaders who work in the field by promoting the science of light and the advanced technologies made possible by optics and photonics. OSA publications, events, technical groups and programs foster optics knowledge and scientific collaboration among all those with an interest in optics and photonics. For more information, visit



GRACE KLONOSKI is the Senior Director, Foundation, Membership & Education Services for the Optical Society of America, 2010 Massachusetts Ave, NW, Washington, DC 20036;;

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