Two St Edmund’s Fellows Among RAS Medal Winners


Each year the Royal Astronomical Society recognises significant achievement in the fields of astronomy and geophysics and two distinguished St Edmund’s Fellows are among this year’s winners, as announced on Friday January 12th.

Professor Bob White, Director of the Faraday Institute for Science and Religion and Fellow of St Edmund’s since 1988, was awarded the Society’s highest honour, the Gold Medal, for a lifetime of distinguished achievement in solid Earth geophysics, a field to which he has made fundamental and transformative contributions over the course of a remarkable research career, supported by the Fellows and community at St Edmund’s. Bob leads a research group investigating the Earth’s dynamic crust: in particular the way in which enormous volumes of volcanic rock are produced when continents and oceans rift apart, and the movement of molten rock under active volcanoes.

                                          Dr Helen Mason OBE          

Life Fellow and former Senior Tutor of the College, Dr Helen Mason OBE was awarded the 2018 Annie Maunder Medal in recognition of her huge passion and commitment to engaging young people in the wonders of the scientific work she has done over a career spanning some thirty-five years at the University of Cambridge. The Royal Astronomical Society drew particular attention to Helen’s work on the exceptionally popular educational website Sun|trek ( and commended her as a phenomenally active role model for leading academics in public engagement. This prestigious award complements the OBE Helen received in 2014, in recognition of her services to higher education and women in STEM.

Speaking after Friday’s announcement, Matthew Bullock, Master of St Edmund’s, in extending his congratulations to the award winners, further commented; “I am delighted to see Bob and Helen be honoured by the Royal Astronomical Society, in the tradition of our notable alumnus Georges Lemaître. The College benefits enormously from having such esteemed academics, as part of its community”.

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Kate Glennie, Development Director