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Interview with David L. Goodstein

Goodstein, David L. (2004) Interview with David L. Goodstein. [Oral History]

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An interview in four sessions, November and December 2002, with David L. Goodstein, Gilloon Distinguished Teaching and Service Professor, emeritus, and professor of physics and applied physics, emeritus, in the Division of Physics, Mathematics, and Astronomy. Dr. Goodstein received his BS from Brooklyn College (1960) and his PhD from the University of Washington (1965). He joined the Caltech faculty in 1966, serving as Caltech’s vice provost from 1987 to 2007, and became professor emeritus in 2009. He recalls his early education; taking up experimental low-temperature physics at the University of Washington; recruitment to Caltech by James Mercereau. Six-month NSF Fellowship, University of Rome. Teaching Physics 2 at Caltech; friendship with Richard Feynman; their trip to the University of Chicago in 1967. Establishment of applied physics option. Comments extensively on the production of the innovative 52-part TV series he conceived called The Mechanical Universe (released 1985-86). Recollections of Caltech presidents Harold Brown and Marvin “Murph” Goldberger; Arroyo Center controversy under Goldberger; Goldberger’s difficulties with provost R. E. Vogt. His own duties as vice provost; involvement with scientific misconduct; technology transfer and patents; SURF (Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships); Campus Computing Organization (later, Information Technology Services). Describes his work on various NSF committees, the California Council on Science and Technology, and the Packard Foundation. Concludes by commenting on his love of teaching, both of undergraduate and graduate students.

Item Type:Oral History
Keywords:Physics, administration
Record Number:CaltechOH:OH_Goodstein_D
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Official Citation:Goodstein, David L. Interview by Shelley Erwin. Pasadena, California, November 11, 18, 25 and December 12, 2002. Oral History Project, California Institute of Technology Archives. Retrieved [supply date of retrieval] from the World Wide Web:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
Subjects:Subjects > Administration
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Subjects > Physics
ID Code:273
Deposited By: Oral Histories Administrator
Deposited On:19 Sep 2018 20:11
Last Modified:04 Oct 2019 15:24

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