Olivia Meredith Bitter

Grad student, ICARUS, Northwestern University

My name is Olivia and I am currently a physics grad student at Northwestern University. I recently received a master’s degree in physics and astrophysics from the University of Chicago. I am also a member of the ICARUS Collaboration and a Fermilab User for over three years. Since joining the collaboration as a summer intern, I have been impressed by the welcoming, supportive, and inclusive nature that the lab and its community has towards all of its members – particularly for aspiring young physicists. I strongly believe that my positive experience at Fermilab as an undergrad is the primary reason that I chose to continue my career in particle physics. I have participated in many lab-wide and FSPA events since arriving, particularly the annual Users Meetings and New Perspectives Conferences, and I have tried to actively contribute more to a community that has made me feel that I belong, through my 2021-2022 term as an FSPA officer. I am currently, the legacy officer for 2022-2023 term, and I look forward to continuing to expand the great work of early career networking and mentorship that FSPA fosters in an inclusive and diverse environment.
As an early career liaison with the Physics Education Topical Group for the Community Engagement Frontier of Snowmass 2021, I worked to provide particle physicists with ways to promote diversity and access to physics education to students from high school through graduate school. Providing opportunities to the next generation of particle physicists is my way to “pay it forward” for all of the mentoring I have received along my own journey. I have also done public outreach using the tools gained in Snowmass discussions to actively promote the field of particle physics and have been a mentor myself. In addition, I have promoted diversity and inclusion in essays I wrote as a political columnist for the UIC Honors College annual journal while an undergrad student there. And, I was one of the FSPA representatives that attended the Annual High Energy Physics (HEP) Advocacy trip, virtually in 2022, to Washington D.C.

I plan to continue the work that the FSPA is doing to create a space for all and help to bring more events and opportunities to the early career Fermilab community.