UEC Nominee for 2020-2022 Term: Sophie Middleton

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Sophie Middleton
California Institute of Technology


I am currently a Postdoctoral Scholar at Caltech working primarily on the Mu2e experiment. I came to Fermilab as a post-doc back in 2018 following my PhD and I spend a large amount of time on-site. Having completed my PhD at Imperial College in the UK, this was my first experience of a US National Lab and, since the day I arrived, I have embraced the opportunity to interact with, and become an active part of, the Fermilab Users Community. Fermilab is at the forefront of US, and global, particle physics and offers a unique environment which, not only facilitates the sharing of scientific knowledge, but the active social side of the lab promotes collaboration and communication between all. It would be an honor to serve this community as part of the User’s Executive Committee (UEC).

In addition to my enthusiasm for Particle Physics, I am passionate about Community Engagement, and outreach, and I am currently the Rare Processes Liaison to the Community Engagement Frontier for Snowmass. Additionally, since joining Mu2e I have been part of the Early Career committee (Young Mu2e). Last year I was the Vice-President and this year I am the Early Career representative to the Mu2e Executive Board. As a graduate student I also sought out opportunities to “give-back” to the community and for 3 years I acted as the High Energy Physics Postgraduate Representative on the Physics Department committee at Imperial College. I organized conferences for High School students and Outreach events focusing on connecting Women and LGBT+ people in the (STEM focused) university. I also taught in under-privileged High Schools and formed networks between these schools and top-UK universities.

Whether you are a student, post-doc, scientist or engineer, from any background, it is important that you feel able to partake in all aspects of Fermilab life. The User’s Executive Committee plays an important role in nurturing this community and promoting inclusion within the lab is vital. It is important that we empower early career scientists, women and minorities. Fermilab is home to many, in particular those coming from overseas, and it’s important that we embrace this multi- cultural atmosphere and make Fermilab somewhere we can all thrive.

It would be an excellent opportunity to be part of UEC and help shape the future of Fermilab. In addition to creating a remarkable and inclusive home for an international physics community the UEC must also engage with, and promote particle physics to, the lawmakers in Washington. I would be privileged to be part of this team and hope that I can utilize my previous experience and acquire many new skills as part of the UEC.