William K. Wootters, Barclay Jermain Professor of Natural Philosophy, Emeritus

The last time a physicist of your stature entered an undergraduate classroom may have been when Einstein stumbled into one looking for the bathroom at Princeton.

It was there, however, that you pursued the noble call of explaining the theories of physics to all manner of students—majors and non-majors, tutorial takers and thesis writers—all of them exposed to the contagious enthusiasm you brought to each lesson. With your broad-ranging mind, you have also taught, with a math colleague, courses on protecting information and, with a philosopher, the implications for that field of advances in modern physics. Some of those advances have been of your own devising. In particular, your coauthored paper on how quantum states can seemingly be teleported across space has been corroborated by experiment, has spawned its own growing subfield, and holds promise of applications in quantum computing that boggle the imagination. In the way that Moses returned from seeing God with his face forever changed, we will remember you as one who, having peered into the deep mystery of quantum mechanics,returned eyes permanently wide with awe and wonder.  

I hereby declare you Barclay Jermain Professor of Natural Philosophy, Emeritus, entitled to all the rights, honors, and privileges appertaining thereto.

June 4, 2017