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Department of Physics

A clever and prize winning way to find the height of the Campanile!

Each yPicture Campanile with Hannah and Varina standing in front of itear, the UNI Department of Physics holds a competition among their freshman class to find the height of the campanile using physics principles. This year the two winners are Hannah Truniger and Varina Timothy.

The pair worked together to find the height of the campanile using shadows. Simply put, they measured Truinger’s height and the length of her shadow, and then measured the length of the campanile’s shadow. They then used a proportion to solve for the height of the tower. Timothy says the tricky part of their method was finding the perfect time for the perfect shadow.

Truniger is a Physics and Chemical Engineering major from Watertown, Minnesota. As a woman in physics, Truniger is excited for the growth she has seen in women in her field. She says, “I definitely think that science and engineering fields have increased in the amount of opportunities for women, and that more and more women are seeking careers in physics and other related fields.” Truniger hopes to someday become a Biochemical Engineer.

Timothy is an Electrical Engineering Technology major from India. She, like Truniger, is also excited to see the growth of the female community in physics. Timothy says she has always been interested in Physics, and has “always gotten better marks than the boys in my class.” She encourages more girls to opt for the major.

Congratulations to these new Panthers!


Article by: Christine Efferding, CHAS Public Relations Assistant