Dr. Paul DeYoung of the Hope College faculty has been appointed the "Kenneth G. Herrick Professor of Physics" at the college.
The appointment recognizes DeYoung for his outstanding and long-time service to Hope. It was approved during the May meeting of the college's Board of Trustees, and is for a 10-year term.
"Dr. DeYoung fulfills all the criteria for the Herrick professorship, and does so with distinction," said Dr. James Boelkins, who is provost at Hope. "His consistent record of teaching, scholarship, funding, collaborative research with students, and faithful service to the college and the field of physics are exemplary."
DeYoung, who has been a member of the Hope faculty since 1985, conducts research in nuclear physics, investigating the structure of rare isotopes at the country's leading accelerators and also studying applications of nuclear physics techniques to other disciplines. He received the national 2001 "Prize to a Faculty Member for Research in an Undergraduate Institution" from the American Physical Society.
He joined the faculty as an assistant professor. He was promoted to associate professor in 1991 and to professor in 1997, and was chairperson of the department of physics from 1995 to 2004. He was on a sabbatical leave during the recent 2004-05 school year at the National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory at Michigan State University. There he coordinated the operation of the large MoNA detector system.
A total of 45 Hope students have worked with DeYoung on research projects over the years. They have gone on to careers in a variety of scientific areas. Former students are now researchers, college and university teachers, doctors, engineers and high school teachers, and several are employed at high-tech companies.
His research has received continuous support, totaling more than $1 million, since 1985 from agencies including the National Science Foundation, Research Corporation and the Michigan Space Grant Consortium. His work has resulted in more than 80 journal articles and more than 80 presentations at professional conferences.
DeYoung is a member of the Sigma Xi national science honorary society and the Council on Undergraduate Research. He has served as an officer at the local and national level for both organizations, and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa.
He graduated from Hope summa cum laude in 1977. He completed his doctorate at the University of Notre Dame in 1982, and subsequently conducted research at the Nuclear Structure Laboratory, SUNY-Stony Brook, before returning to Hope to teach.
Endowed chairs are established by donors who wish to assist the college on a permanent basis through the support of a faculty member. The gift is placed in the college's endowment fund with investment income used to support the work of the honored professor.
The Kenneth G. Herrick chair was established in 1981 in honor of Kenneth G. Herrick, president of the Herrick Foundation and chairman of the Board of Trustees of Tecumseh Products Inc. Herrick died on Sunday, July 25, 2004, at age 83. The chair had been held since 1984 by Dr. James Gentile, a biologist and dean for the natural sciences who left the college earlier this year to become president of Research Corporation of Tucson, Ariz. It was first held by Dr. Michael Doyle, a former member of the college's chemistry faculty.