David H. Cushing Endowed Scholarship in Optical Sciences

David Cushing

David H. Cushing, an expert in thin films and optical coatings, was born and raised in Boston, where he earned his B.S. in electrical engineering from Northeastern University. He worked for several years at Baird Atomic Inc. with thin films pioneer Edgar Barr, and then cofounded MicroCoatings Inc. The company became renowned the quality of its work; NASA used their filters for the Galileo and Voyager spacecrafts.

After MicroCoatings was acquired by the Optical Corporation of America, Cushing was employed by JDS Fitel Inc. and Corning Precision Lenses. He and his wife, Helen, retired to Tucson in 2004, where he discovered the College of Optical Sciences.

David Cushing was extraordinarily generous to the college, donating a coating machine and sharing his expertise with students. After his death in 2009, Helen endowed this scholarship in his honor.


The Cushing Scholarship is awarded to one undergraduate student per academic year who is a U.S. citizen, preferably with an interest in optical coatings.


Caleb Cook

  • Caroline Humphreys

  • Matthew Hevert
  • Caroline Humphreys

  • Natalie Shultz

  • Clayton Kingsley

  • Diana Garland

  • Phillip McCann

  • Phillip McCann

  • Kaitlyn Williams

  • Derek Keyes

  • Benjamin Cromey

  • Hannah Grant

  • Gregory Jacob