Polykarp Kusch
Polykarp Kusch was a German-American physicist. In 1955 he was jointly awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics with Willis Eugene Lamb for his accurate determination that the magnetic moment
Magnetic moment
The magnetic moment of a magnet is a quantity that determines the force that the magnet can exert on electric currents and the torque that a magnetic field will exert on it...

 of the electron
The electron is a subatomic particle with a negative elementary electric charge. It has no known components or substructure; in other words, it is generally thought to be an elementary particle. An electron has a mass that is approximately 1/1836 that of the proton...

 was greater than its theoretical value, thus leading to reconsideration of—and innovations in—quantum electrodynamics
Quantum electrodynamics
Quantum electrodynamics is the relativistic quantum field theory of electrodynamics. In essence, it describes how light and matter interact and is the first theory where full agreement between quantum mechanics and special relativity is achieved...


He received his bachelor's degree
Bachelor's degree
A bachelor's degree is usually an academic degree awarded for an undergraduate course or major that generally lasts for three or four years, but can range anywhere from two to six years depending on the region of the world...

 in physics in 1931 from Case Western Reserve University
Case Western Reserve University
Case Western Reserve University is a private research university located in Cleveland, Ohio, USA...

. From the University of Illinois
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
The University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign is a large public research-intensive university in the state of Illinois, United States. It is the flagship campus of the University of Illinois system...

, he received his master's degree
Master's degree
A master's is an academic degree granted to individuals who have undergone study demonstrating a mastery or high-order overview of a specific field of study or area of professional practice...

 in 1933 and his Ph.D.
Doctor of Philosophy
Doctor of Philosophy, abbreviated as Ph.D., PhD, D.Phil., or DPhil , in English-speaking countries, is a postgraduate academic degree awarded by universities...

 in 1936. He spent much of his career as a professor at Columbia University
Columbia University
Columbia University in the City of New York is a private, Ivy League university in Manhattan, New York City. Columbia is the oldest institution of higher learning in the state of New York, the fifth oldest in the United States, and one of the country's nine Colonial Colleges founded before the...

 in New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

, and served as the university's provost
Provost (education)
A provost is the senior academic administrator at many institutions of higher education in the United States, Canada and Australia, the equivalent of a pro-vice-chancellor at some institutions in the United Kingdom and Ireland....

 for several years before departing for the newly-created University of Texas at Dallas
University of Texas at Dallas
The University of Texas at Dallas, also referred to as UT Dallas or UTD, is a public research university in the University of Texas System. The main campus is in the heart of the Richardson, Texas, Telecom Corridor, north of downtown Dallas...

. During his tenure at Columbia, he was the doctoral supervisor for Gordon Gould
Gordon Gould
Gordon Gould was an American physicist who is widely, but not universally, credited with the invention of the laser. Gould is best known for his thirty-year fight with the United States Patent and Trademark Office to obtain patents for the laser and related technologies...

, the inventor of the laser
A laser is a device that emits light through a process of optical amplification based on the stimulated emission of photons. The term "laser" originated as an acronym for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation...


A residential dormitory for undergraduate students at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio on the South Campus is named after Dr. Kusch. The building is named Kusch House. It is located on Carlton Road in Cleveland Heights.

External links

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