Richard L. Shoemaker received his Ph.D. in physical chemistry from the University of Illinois in 1971. After two years at IBM Research Laboratories, he came to the University of Arizona where he became professor of optical sciences, chemistry and radiology. He also served as the associate dean for academic programs at the College of Optical Sciences. He is a fellow of the Optical Society (OSA) and has twice served on its board of directors.
Rick taught 12 different courses in optical sciences at UA, four of which he developed. His publications span a wide range of interests, including electrochemistry, chemical physics, optical physics, applied optics, cytometry, biomedical engineering and computer engineering. He co-authored three popular books on microcomputers and personal computers with Murray Sargent III.
His research accomplishments include the design and construction of a 60-processor computer system. At that time it was the most powerful computer on the UA campus. At IBM, he and R.G. Brewer developed a powerful technique for observing optical coherent transients such as the photon echo.
Rick established this scholarship out of gratitude to the College of Optical Sciences for the wonderful colleagues and opportunities it has provided him. This scholarship was generously established by Dr. Shoemaker with the desire to support outstanding graduate students as they pursue their own careers in the optical sciences.
The Shoemaker Scholarship is open to first-year graduate students at the College of Optical Sciences. In addition to displaying academic excellence, applicants should demonstrate commitment to scholarship, involvement in extracurricular activities and interests beyond science and technology.