Quantum Physics Club holds interest meeting

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Behind the intimidating exterior of quantum physics is a world filled with many different worlds. The amount of interpretations of quantum physics are almost endless, and the Quantum Physics club aims to explore as many as they can. “In our club, we would have a discussion about what our favorite quantum interpretation is, or what we think is the ‘correct’ quantum physics interpretation. To give an example: the Many Worlds Interpretation says that for each decision we make another universe in which we would make an alternate decision is also created simultaneously,” club president and junior Rick Yoon said. “I find these interpretations really interesting because each one of them is so different from one another.”

Evelyn Li, Staff Writer

Beginning as an official Jefferson eighth period club next school year, the Quantum Physics Club held their first interest meeting on Wednesday, May 26. Through examining the philosophy behind quantum physics, this club plans to delve into the rich history, significant persons, and multiple interpretations of quantum physics.

“I wanted to raise awareness of the importance of quantum physics because it’s everywhere around us and really important. I thought, since this is a high school for science, why don’t we have a club for quantum physics? Also, I wanted to make quantum physics accessible for people of all grades and promote interests in the area of this science,” club president and junior Rick Yoon said. “Essentially, we’re going to be talking about the different ideas [and] concepts that underlie quantum physics.”

Furthermore, the broad variety of what the Quantum Physics club wants to investigate includes not only the scientific aspects but also the historical and philosophical aspects of quantum physics.

“The quantum physics club is not only about the science and math of quantum physics, but also about the applications, philosophy, and metaphysics of quantum physics,” Yoon said. “I think it’s a genre of physics that is big enough to the point where it can be explored for an entire year, and we would still have so much stuff to talk about and explore in quantum physics.”

In addition, the final goal of the club encompasses a thought-provoking mission of finding out what quantum physics truly is and how it affects the real world. Instead of following a strict weekly lecture format, the club hopes to engage their club members by introducing experiments, guest speakers, club collaborations, and research papers.
“Our ultimate goal for the club is to discover what quantum physics tells us about the reality that we live in. We want to do this by exploring through all the different interpretations of quantum physics. We also want to go through thought experiments and even have philosophical debates,” Yoon said. “We’re definitely going to have guest speakers– I think they’re a really fun, interesting experience. Student lectures and club collaborations are also expected. But another thing I want to add is that we plan to include actual research papers, and we would show them to the club and discuss them.”

While Yoon pitched the idea during late August in the form of a Google interest form, the club was only approved earlier this year. Difficulties with finding a club sponsor contributed heavily to the late application of the club.
“The process of trying to find a sponsor took a long time. It was really tedious, and quite frankly, I was sort of frustrated because there were a lot of people who were interested in this club, and I was really grateful for that, but I didn’t want to keep them waiting. Unfortunately finding the sponsor just took a long time,” Yoon said.

Even though the struggle with finding a club sponsor prohibited the Quantum Physics club from becoming an eighth period club, Yoon found a way to still discuss quantum physics by gathering a group of interested students over a Facebook group chat.

“During that period of wait, I created a little messenger group chat dedicated to this club, and we would talk about different concepts of quantum physics. Sometimes, I would send in interesting quantum physics articles that people could read, and we can discuss about those,” Yoon said.

Although the club had a rocky start– resulting in its first official meeting being next year– it garnered an impressive amount of interest. With over 45 attendees at just one of their interest meetings, the club is hopeful that next year students will remain just as engaged.

“I did expect less people to sign up, but I’m really glad that more people did. It was a good surprise. I guess it is nice to know that a lot of people are interested in it, and a lot of people want to continue it,” club publicist and freshman Srimaye Peddinti said.

Although the idea of quantum physics may seem intimidating to many students– especially novices– the club aims not just to teach, but to mostly immerse members into the world of quantum physics. The unique understanding and sense of quantum physics is what keeps the club going.

“I want to give people an experience of what it’s like to learn about quantum physics as well as bring them awareness of the importance. I also want to give them a really fun, unique experience with low stress,” Yoon said. “Having a good taste of the world is what I want our members to grasp because physics is so quirky and strange. So, if I have people dip their feet in that sort of quirky world, the more and more they go inside that world, the more familiar it becomes.”