Organization and Procedures for the National Nuclear Physics Summer School

The annual Nuclear Physics Summer School is supported by the NSF and the INT and is managed by a Steering Committee with rotating membership drawn from the nuclear physics community at large, with input from the DNP of the APS.

I. Steering Committee:

The present Steering Committee (established approximately January 1, 1995) has the following membership: Steering Committee.

The members of the SC are in rotating positions, except for the NSF grant PI, whose membership is by virtue of being grant holder. The normal tenure of a SC member will be four (4) years, so each year two (2) members will be replaced. The intention is to each year replace one theorist and one experimentalist, so that an approximate parity between theorists and experimentalists is preserved.


  • The NSF proposal suggested three year terms, but four-year terms are better, if the Chair and Vice-Chair are to have terms of two years each.
  • A person is appointed as Vice Chair after serving for two years on the SC would serve as Vice Chair for years 3-4 and then as Chair for years 5-6, i.e. for a total of six years on the SC; the annual rotations would then need to be adjusted appropriately, either by someone rotating off before the full term of four years or by postponing a replacement.

II. Organization of each year's Summer School:

It is envisioned that the Summer School will take place at different locations from year to year, being organized by 'volunteers' from the NP community as it has in the past.

In the spring of each year, a notice is placed in the DNP and INT newsletters inviting potential organizers for the next year's Summer School to submit informal proposals, indicating possible sites and anticipated funding schemes. The deadline for proposals to organize will be August 15 of the year preceding the School.

The Steering Committee will discuss the proposals and select an 'Organizer' (which may be a team of people) and one of the proposed sites.


  • The NSF grant provides funds for student support and advertising.
  • The host institution will be expected to assume responsibility for the transportation and living costs of the speakers.
  • The INT has agreed to serve as a default host institution, with the site being the UW Seattle campus, on the understanding the the Organizers of such Schools would ordinarily come from outside the INT.
  • The INT is supporting the School by providing secretarial assistance, including mailing out the posters, assembling the applications, and carrying out the correspondence, if needed.


  • The years 1995 and 1996 were anomalous and should not be seen as typical. Ordinarily, the Organizer would have no particular relation to the INT, and the site could be anywhere in the country. Subsequently, the SC will compose the lecture program for the School, in close consultation with the designated Organizer, and with due attention to topical balance and recent programs.


  • There are usually five major lecture series, with time and material for study provided, as well as 'office hours' where the students can ask questions and have in-depth discussions with the lecturers. There is also a possibility for the students to present seminars, plus occasionally a few special seminars.
  • The Organizer (who may be a team of more than one person) invites the lecturers, negotiates the practical arrangements regarding the site, prepares the poster, selects the students, and runs the school. After the School is completed, a report must be filed with the SC and a financial statement made to the grant holder.


  • Ordinarily, the target group consists of applicants who are at most one year away from the PhD (plus or minus), with the priority falling off rapidly in both directions. In a steady state, it should then be possible for any student to take part in one Summer School at some point.

Summary of duties:

A. Chair of the Steering Committee:

  1. a) Chairs the Steering Committee.
  2. b) Places the ad in the DNP and INT newsletters.
  3. c) Leads the discussions with the SC members regarding
  4. i) selection of the Organizer(s) and site from the proposals,
  5. ii) composition of the lecture program,
  6. iii) the rotation of the membership, including the solicitation of suggestions from the DNP Executive Committee, and
  7. iv) the selection of the new Vice-Chair.
  8. d) Serves as main contact person between the SC and
  9. i) the Organizer of the School,
  10. ii) the grant holder, and iii) the INT.

B. Vice-Chair of the Steering Committee:

  1. a) Serves as the principal adviser to the SC Chair.
  2. b) Serves in place of the Chair, when necessary.
  3. c) Is the designated successor of the SC Chair.

C. Grant Holder:

  1. a) Serves as the principal liaison with the NSF.
  2. b) Oversees the budgetary aspects of each year's School.

D. Member of the Steering Committee:

  1. a) Help advertise the Summer School and encourage applications.
  2. b) Help recruit potential Organizers.
  3. c) Participate in the process of identifying an Organizer and a site.
  4. d) Help compose the lecture program.

E. Organizer(s) of the Summer School:

  1. a) Submits a proposal to organize next year's Summer School, containing proposed possible sites and the anticipated funding scheme.
  2. b) Takes active part, with the Steering Committee, in the composition of the lecture program. Organizational and practical aspects of the particular School, including
  3. i) inviting the selected lecturers (if an invited lecturer cannot accept, the program process is iterated with the SC),
  4. ii) preparing the poster,
  5. iii) selecting the students for admission to the school,
  6. iv) making the practical arrangements regarding the site,
  7. v) running the school,
  8. vi) preparing and submitting a report on the school to the SC, including student questionnaires, and a financial accounting to the grant holder.




To: Dirk Walecka, Chair, DNP Executive Committee

From: Jorgen Randrup, Chair

Bruce Barrett, Vice Chair

Steering Committee for the Nuclear Physics Summer School

Copy: Ben Gibson, Secretary-Treasurer, DNP Executive Committee

Date: 30apr96

About: Nuclear Physics Summer School


We thought that the upcoming DNP meeting would be a good opportunity to draw your attention to the information below regarding the National Summer School on Nuclear Physics, since the School is intended to serve the DNP community at large and will depend on input from the DNP for its continued success.

The Nuclear Physics Summer School started about ten years ago on the spontaneous initiative of a group of theorists that had gathered for informal discussions at the Capra Ranch outside Los Angeles. The School has been very successful and, in order to ensure its long-term continuation, we have recently tried to firm up the associated procedures.

We are enclosing the current draft describing the (intended) organization of the School and we are inviting your comments. The envisioned role of the DNP is primarily two-fold: 1) To suggest names for the annual replacements on the Steering Committee, and 2) to help advertise each year's School and solicit proposals for organizing the following year's School.

We feel that the support and involvement of the DNP is an important element in the Summer School and that it will help to ensure that it be responsive to our field's needs for timeliness and diversity, as they develop over time. Please do not hesitate to contact us for for discussion/information.

Finally, since it so happens that Wick Haxton will be coming to the DNP meeting (while we will not), we have asked him to make himself available to you to try answering any questions you might have about the School. We are grateful to Wick for agreeing to help in this manner, even though he has rotated of the Steering Committee. Wick is very familiar with the development of the School, since he was one of the originators and served on the Steering Committee until recently; he also co-organized the 1990 NP Summer School in Santa Cruz.

Yours Sincerely,


Jorgen Randrup, Chair Steering Committee for the Nuclear Physics Summer School

Bruce Barrett, Vice Chair


Information for potential organizers:

The school is run by a 'Steering Committee' which solicits proposals two years in advance from people interested in serving as 'Organizer' of the school; such proposals should contain one or more suggestions for the site, a budget, and a suggested list of lecturers and topics for the summer school (discussed more below). The Steering Committee will then discuss the proposals and seek to arrive at a preference.

The selected Organizer and host institution are responsible for handling the practical arrangements (housing and meeting facilities, recruitment and selection of students, and management of the day-to-day activities of the school). The INT can provide poster production and mailing if desired, as well as assistance with financial projections. A subcontract will be established with the host institution, and the host institution will send an itemized invoice to the INT at the end of the summer school to be reimbursed for the costs covered by the grant. The NSF grant (held by Wick Haxton and Bruce Barrett) is for participant support costs only (no indirect allowed), intended to cover approximately 75% of room and board for the students, 100% of room, board, and travel for the lecturers, and up to $3K for coffee break refreshments. It is expected that each student's home institution will cover the remaining 25% of room and board as well as the student's travel costs. The host institution should plan on providing about $5,000 in support to cover various social activities of the school (receptions, excursions, etc.).

The lecture program is decided by a suitable interaction between the Organizer and the Steering Committee, by iterating on the originally suggested program. There are usually five major lecture series (each consisting of four 90-minute lectures, for a total of 20 lectures), some possibility for student seminars, separate time for 'office hours,' during which the students can interact with the lecturers (a very important part of the summer school), plus occasionally a few special seminars. Each school's lecture program is intended to be broad (as opposed to focused), which not only helps to broaden the perspective of the (often too specialized) new generation but also helps to attract students from the entire cross section of the field, thereby greatly aiding the formation of a community spirit within the nuclear physics field (this is something the students tend to emphasize as one of the very positive aspects of the NPSS). The Organizer is responsible for making the practical arrangements, including the selection of the students (we are usually oversubscribed and tend to target students that are within approximately one year of their PhD degree, with either sign). The Organizer is not expected to lecture as well.


The Nuclear Physics Summer School grew out of discussions at an informal meeting between a group of theorists held at the Capra Ranch 26-28 February 1987. It has been held each summer since 1988, with the exception of 1994 when we went through a transition phase to the present more formalized structure which involves the DNP in the rotation of the Steering Committee membership.