Physics major and Westover Honors student Nick Savino ’19 will spend the summer at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, in Tennessee, as part of an internship he got through the U.S. Department of Energy. For 10 weeks, he’ll work with scientists and other undergraduate researchers at the lab, which was founded as part of the Manhattan Project in 1943.
While Savino doesn’t yet know all of the details about the Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship, he said he’ll be “doing material testing with interferometry.” Interferometry has been defined as “a series of techniques that uses a series of superimposed electromagnetic waves to extract data and other insights regarding the waves.” It’s used in fiber optics, seismology, astronomy, nuclear physics, and other fields.
“I’m just excited to go and work with the other interns and the other scientists there,” he said.
Savino applied for the internship last year, but wasn’t selected. After spending last summer on campus, working with assistant professor of physics Dr. William Roach on a research project involving lasers and a phenomenon known as the Magneto-Optic Kerr Effect, he applied again and was accepted. “It helped that I had the experience with Dr. Roach from last summer,” Savino said. “I think it was a significant asset to have that experience, so that I’m more desirable for different internships.”
In addition to his bachelor’s degree in physics, when he graduates in 2019 Savino will have minors in mathematics, history, and business. He’s also captain of Lynchburg’s varsity tennis team.
Asked how he balances everything in his busy life, he said, “I think a lot of it is making sure I plan ahead and prioritize what’s important and … [to] not over commit, not to get involved in things that are going to get in the way, and just recognize where the priorities are. And not sleep a lot. There are plenty of nights where I’m in the physics lab till one in the morning and have a workout at 7 o’clock that day. It’s not easy, but I hope it will pay off in the long run. The other thing that’s beneficial: They’re all things I enjoy.”
To learn more about Savino and his Lynchburg College experience, watch this video.