SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION: Pollicove scholarship supports precision optics manufacturing

Sept. 5, 2008
A new grant program endowed by the H.M Pollicove Memorial fund and matched by the OSA Foundation provides support to graduate and undergraduate students pursuing a degree in precision optics manufacturing.
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A new grant program endowed by the H.M Pollicove Memorial fund and matched by the OSA Foundation provides support to graduate and undergraduate students pursuing a degree in precision optics manufacturing.


Katherine Hasman, a recent graduate from the University of Rochester, New York, USA, is the first winner of the Harvey M. Pollicove Memorial Scholarship, a new grant program that provides support to students pursuing a degree in the field of precision optics manufacturing. Hasman will use the $4,000 scholarship to help defray the cost of tuition as she pursues a master's degree in optics at the University of Rochester.

This annual scholarship is endowed through the H.M. Pollicove Memorial Fund, established in 2005 through contributions from Harvey Pollicove's friends and colleagues to recognize his work in the field of precision optics manufacturing, with matching funds provided by the OSA Foundation (OSAF).

"Precision manufacturing is a critical piece of the optics industry, and we want to encourage students to pursue this field," said Gary Bjorklund, OSA Foundation chair. "This scholarship helps to raise visibility of an important segment of our industry, provides needed support for students and honors the great work of Harvey Pollicove. The Foundation is proud to support this program."

The scholarship is available to undergraduate or graduate students from any country who are accepted or enrolled at least half-time in an optics manufacturing program at a participating institution. To be eligible for consideration, the student's work/research must be focused on manufacturing applications. Additionally, candidates are judged on academic excellence, leadership skills, innovation and forward thinking, and outstanding communication skills.

Applications for the Pollicove Scholarship are solicited, collected, and evaluated by the students' academic institutions. All qualified applications are forwarded to the OSAF and the HPM Scholarship Advisory Committee, which provides candidate evaluations and selection suggestions. Final selection of the award winner is made by the academic institution.

The award will rotate among a group of universities. Next year, a student from the University of Arizona, Tucson, will be selected. In 2010, the award will move to the University of Central Florida, Orlando.

Harvey Pollicove began his career in 1964 as a lens grinder at Eastman Kodak Company and remained at that company for the majority of his career in optics manufacturing. In the 70s, Pollicove led the Kodak manufacturing team that developed and implemented a lens-fabrication process that allowed the creation of disk cameras, and later he helped develop a similar process that led to better optics in CD players. He eventually led the team that created the first high-volume manufacturing processes for both plastic and glass molded aspheric optics.

In 1990, Pollicove retired from Kodak to join the University of Rochester, where he became the cofounder and director of the Center for Optics Manufacturing (COM). The center researchers design methods to produce lenses and other optical components that are traditionally difficult or impossible to create.

Pollicove was a two-time recipient of the Department of Defense's Manufacturing Technology Achievement Award and a corecipient of the R&D 100 Award. On the occasion of his 40th anniversary in the optics industry, he was honored with the Photonics Spectra Distinction in Photonics Award. Pollicove died in 2004 at the age of 59.

To learn more about the Pollicove Scholarship Program and application requirements, or to contribute toward its endowment, please contact [email protected].

The OSA Foundation, created in 2002, is dedicated to supporting programs that advance youth science education, provide optics education and resources to underserved populations, provide career and professional development resources, and support awards and honors that recognize technical and business excellence. Contributions to the Foundation, a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code, are deductible as provided by law. All donors receive special recognition and acknowledgements, unless they request to be anonymous. Donations to the OSA Foundation are matched dollar-for-dollar by the Optical Society. For more information, please contact the OSA Foundation staff via telephone: 202-416-1421 or e-mail: [email protected].

GRACE KLONOSKI is the senior director, Foundation and the Member & Education Services, for the Optical Society of America, 2010 Massachusetts Ave, NW, Washington, DC 20036; e-mail: [email protected]; Web site:

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