First Minister meets Higgs Prize for Physics winners.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced the newest winners of the Higgs Prize for Physics, congratulating them on their success.
The prize is named after Scottish-based Nobel Physics Prize winner Professor Peter Higgs, whose work in the field has had a significant impact on modern day particle physics, and rewards pupils who show a particular aptitude for the subject.
Ms Sturgeon and Education Secretary Angela Constance met Professor Higgs himself and the four winners in the First Minister’s office on Thursday 29th January.
The winners are:
• Eilidh Birse – a former pupil at Boclair Academy in Bearsden who is now studying medicine at the University of St Andrews
• Julie Lynch – a former pupil at St Ninian’s High School in Giffnock who is now studying Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Glasgow and is continuing to take Physics as a third subject
• Stuart McGibbon – a fellow former pupil at St Ninian’s High School in Giffnock, now currently studying Physics at the University of Glasgow
• Raheem Beg – a former pupil at Perth High School who is currently studying mathematics at the University of Dundee
As part of the Scottish Government funded prize, they will travel to the internationally renowned CERN research facility in Switzerland in July to attend lectures and seminars on physics as part of the summer school programme, as well as talking to Scottish researchers about their work at the facility and their careers in physics.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said:
“Scotland has a wonderful history of scientific discovery and it’s encouraging to see that tradition continue through today’s pupils and students who continue to be passionate and excited to take on the scientific challenges that remain unexplained.
“Science is hugely important to Scotland in the modern era and the achievements of Professor Higgs – a man whose work is internationally renowned – are of course inspiring for any budding scientist. This year, the International Year of Light, also celebrates the incredible legacy of another Scottish physicist, James Clerk Maxwell, whose theories underpin the technology at the heart of almost all communications equipment we take for granted today.
“We are absolutely determined to support pupils to excel and remove any barriers that might prevent them from realising their full potential. This prize is the perfect example of hard work opening up life-changing opportunities. Today’s four winners Eilidh, Julie, Stuart and Raheem now have the opportunity to go to the fantastic CERN research facility in Switzerland to listen and learn from some of the brightest minds of our generation. We are offering them the chance to be the very best they can be – the vast knowledge and experience they will have access to is an opportunity that many across the world will envy.
“I’m therefore delighted to award a prize in Professor Higg’s name to these exceptionally hard working and talented youngsters.”
Professor Higgs said:
“Everyone in life has people that they admire and strive to be like – my own inspiration was Paul Dirac, a man who won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1933 – and I’m honoured that an award in my name is used as inspiration to the younger generation of physicists.
“I congratulate Eilidh, Julie, Stuart and Raheem on winning this prize and I am sure they will have an amazing time at CERN where they will learn from the very best. I hope these four promising young talents go on to became esteemed in their own right.”
Pictures of the First Minister meeting Professor Higgs and the prize winners will be available here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/firstministerofscotland
The prize is awarded on merit, to the highest performing male and female Advanced Higher Physics candidates from a publicly-funded school.