Ian ShipseyDistinguished Physics Professor from Purdue University Discussed Cochlear Implants in First Physics Neff Lecture of 2009

The science behind a cochlear implant and how has changed a deaf physicist's life was the topic of the James R. Neff Lecture in Physics for Kansas State University's department of physics.

Ian Shipsey, the Julian Schwinger Distinguished Professor of Physics at Purdue University who received a cochlear implant in 2002, spoke at 4 p.m. Monday, April 13, in Hale Library's Hemisphere Room. The lecture was free and provided understandable information of interest to the general public.

Shipsey lost nearly all of his hearing in 1989 at the age of 30. The cause was a strong antibiotic he was taking for pneumonia, which caused irreversible damage to his cochlea. Despite his disability, Shipsey is an award-winning teacher and physicist whose research includes experimental elementary particle physics and heavy quark flavor physics. His many honors include being named a Fellow of the American Physical Society, Texas National Research Laboratory Superconducting Super Collider National Fellow and the National Science Foundation's Young Investigator Award.

The James R. Neff Lectureship in Physics is sponsored by the James R. Neff Lecture Endowment. Neff was an internationally recognized orthopedic surgeon and professor of at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha who received his undergraduate degree from K-State in 1962. Neff established the lectureship in 1995 to perpetuate and honor his parents, Everett and Florine Neff, and his sister, Janice K. Neff Standish; and also to express his gratitude for the opportunities and education he received at K-State. Neff died in 2005. More information on the lectureship is available at:

Courtesy of K-State Media Relations 

Source: Tim Bolton, 785-532-1664, tbolton@k-state.edu
News release prepared by: Beth Bohn, 785-532-6415,

Thursday, April 2, 2009