STCC professor elected as Fellow Member of the Optical Society
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Dr. Nicholas Massa, Springfield Technical Community College professor of optics and photonics, was elected as a 2021 Fellow Member of The Optical Society (OSA).
Massa was one of 118 OSA members from 24 countries awarded the distinction. According to the Optical Society, the Fellow Members were recognized for their significant contributions to the advancement of optics and photonics through education, research, engineering, business leadership and service.
The Optics and Photonics program at STCC teaches students to understand the fundamental properties of light and harness the properties in practical applications, from supermarket scanners to laser surgery.
Massa is being honored “for outstanding contributions to the education of photonics technicians through the development of innovative curricula and professional development for educators,” according to the OSA.
The OSA Board of Directors confirmed the selection of the candidates at its September 2020 meeting.
“I consider it an honor and a privilege to be part of such an esteemed group of colleagues dedicated to advancing the field of optics and photonics. My hope is to inspire as many young people as I can to pursue careers in this important and fascinating field,” Massa said.
Massa, of Longmeadow, has taught at STCC since 1986. He has led the Optics and Photonics program since 1990.
Dr. Geraldine de Berly, vice president of Academic Affairs at STCC, applauded Massa for the recognition.
“Dr. Massa has been inspiring students in his program for decades,” de Berly said. “He is passionate about the Optics and Photonics program, which is the only one of its kind in the region. Students can pursue a two-year associate degree or one-year certificate and upon completion will be in demand for good jobs.”
I consider it an honor and a privilege to be part of such an esteemed group of colleagues dedicated to advancing the field of optics and photonics. My hope is to inspire as many young people as I can to pursue careers in this important and fascinating field.Dr. Nicholas Massa, Professor, Optics & Photonics
Founded in 1916, OSA is the leading professional association in optics and photonics, home to accomplished science, engineering, and business leaders from all over the world. Through world-renowned publications, meetings, and membership programs, OSA provides quality information and inspiring interactions that power achievements in the science of light.
Fellow membership in OSA is limited to no more than 10 percent of the membership and is reserved for members who have served with distinction in the advancement of optics and photonics.
“Congratulations to the 2021 Fellows,” said 2020 OSA President Stephen Fantone. “Your election, by your peers, is affirmation of your impressive accomplishments within our field. Thank you for your dedication to OSA and for advancing the science of light.”
Massa holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree in electrical engineering from Western New England University and a master’s degree and Ph.D. in educational leadership/adult learning from the University of Connecticut. Massa has been principal investigator and co-principal investigator on more than a dozen National Science Foundation grants involving optics and photonics curriculum and instructional design, laboratory development, skills standards development, web-based teacher professional development, and problem-based learning instructional resource development and research.
He has presented workshops and seminars nationally and internationally on contemporary issues in optics and photonics technology education including active learning, adaptive learning, and problem-based learning instructional methodologies.
As part of Massachusetts STEM Week, Oct. 19-23, Massa will host an online presentation on the Optics and Photonics Technology program. For more information about Massa’s presentation and other events scheduled for the week, visit stcc.edu/stem-week.
He was founding co-director of the NSF-Advanced Technical Education (ATE) National Center for Telecommunications Technology (NCTT). He is currently principal investigator and lead researcher on the NSF-ATE “Problem Based-Learning in Advanced Photonics Manufacturing Education” project in partnership with MIT’s AIM Photonics Academy. His expertise includes optics and photonics technology education, educational assessment and evaluation, curriculum development, teacher professional development, web-based instructional design, and problem-based learning.
Interested in applying to STCC? Visit stcc.edu/apply or call Admissions at (413) 755-3333.
About Springfield Technical Community College
STCC, the Commonwealth's only technical community college, continues the pioneering legacy of the Springfield Armory with comprehensive and technical education in manufacturing, STEM, healthcare, business, social services, and the liberal arts. STCC's highly regarded workforce, certificate, degree, and transfer programs are the most affordable in Springfield and provide unequalled opportunity for the vitality of Western Massachusetts. Founded in 1967, the college – a designated Hispanic Serving Institution – seeks to close achievement gaps among students who traditionally face societal barriers. STCC supports students as they transform their lives through intellectual, cultural, and economic engagement while becoming thoughtful, committed and socially responsible graduates.
Jim Danko, firstname.lastname@example.org, (413) 755-4812