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Endowments at UVA

Emmet F. and N. Alys Low Endowed Professorship in Physics


In honor of his stepfather and mother, Professor Emmet F. Low, Jr., created the Emmet F. and N. Alys Low Professorship in Physics at the University's College at Wise. The professorship will support a faculty member in physics who strives to embody the teaching philosophies so highly valued by Professor Low. As academic dean and as a professor of mathematics, Emmet F. Low, Jr., was a major influence in shaping the academic curriculum and collegiate life at Clinch Valley College, now the University's College at Wise. He served as dean from 1972 to 1986 and continued full-time teaching until his retirement in 1989. Professor Low was named the College's 1997'1998 Volunteer of the Year. Emmet Low was in many respects a self-made man. A graduate of OrlandoSenior High School in Florida, where he lived with his grandparents, he worked for a time as a handyman and held numerous other jobs before he entered military service in 1942. In 1946, he enrolled in Stetson University in De Land, Florida, and went on to earn his master's and Ph.D. degrees in mathematics at the University of Florida. He developed an interest in physics during his doctoral training and early teaching. Professor Low's interest in physics made him aware of the need to offer broader educational opportunities in this field to students during their first years in college. He came to Wise after retiring as dean of the faculty at the University of Miami, where such opportunities for undergraduates existed. In 1995, he initiated discussions about personally creating an endowed professorship dedicated solely to the teaching and study of physics, rather than a multidisciplinary position in the sciences and mathematics. Professor Low passed away on February 24, 2003. The Emmet F. and N. Alys Low Professorship will help the College recruit and retain Ph.D.s in physics who have demonstrated teaching expertise, who will serve as advocates for physics in the College's curriculum, and who will promote the development of the physics program. Chairholders also must possess a strong commitment to the promotion of science education, particularly physics, in the College's teacher training program and in the public schools.

This chair is currently vacant

History of Past Recipients and Projects