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Student Organizations

WKU Physics and Astronomy


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Physics and Astronomy 
Western Kentucky University 
1906 College Heights Blvd #11077 
Bowling Green, KY 42101-1077 

Phone: 270-745-4357 

Fax: 270-745-2014



The Department of Physics and Astronomy has two student organizations open to students who have an interest in either physics or astronomy. These are the Society of Physics Students and the Hilltopper Astronomy Club respectively. In addition, the department has a chapter of the national physics honor society Sigma Pi Sigma.


Society of Physics Students

The Society of Physics Students (SPS) is a professional physics association designed for students who have an interest in physics. Most student members are physics majors or minors but membership is not restricted to these groups. SPS is managed by the American Institute of Physics as a service to students and the physics community. The faculty advisor is Dr. Steven Gibson.


Benefits of membership in the WKU SPS chapter include:

  • Free admission to the Fall and Spring SPS picnics
  • Free admission to the annual Sigma Pi Sigma banquet
  • Use of the SPS Student Lounge (TCCW 238)
  • Use of a locker in the SPS Student Lounge
  • Opportunities to visit prominent physics research facilities
  • Free pizza at monthly SPS meetings
  • The monthly journal Physics Today


Hilltopper Astronomy Club

 The Hilltopper Astronomy Club is for students, faculty, and local persons who are interested in astronomy. Its purpose is to help WKU students, as well as community members, learn about the universe that surrounds us. Activities include star parties, deep sky observing with telescopes, and enjoying other astronomical events. We also have community outreach programs which serve to educate the public. The faculty advisor is Dr. Richard Gelderman.


Sigma Pi Sigma

Sigma Pi Sigma exists to honor outstanding scholarship in physics; to encourage interest in physics among students at all levels; to promote an attitude of service of its members towards their fellow students, colleagues, and the public; and to provide a fellowship of persons who have excelled in physics.

The Western Kentucky University chapter of Sigma Pi Sigma was established on May 25, 1960. The minimum requirements for membership are:

  • the completion of all core curriculum physics courses,
  • a GPA in all physics courses of at least 3.30/4.00 and an overall GPA of at least 3.00/4.00.

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 Last Modified 9/24/14