St John's College Alumni eNewsletter - July 2021

College and Alumni News for July 2021


I joined St John’s in 2016 as a tutor for Mathematics, having spent my prior academic career entirely in the United States. I teach “physical applied” courses such as Geometry, Dynamics, and Quantum Theory to our undergraduate mathematicians. My own training was principally as a theoretical physicist, and my research centres on mathematical properties of the physical theories that are used to describe the interactions of elementary particles, and relativistic quantum mechanical systems more generally.

Since 2016 I have been a principal investigator in an international research consortium, the Simons Collaboration on the Nonperturbative Bootstrap.

Click here to read more about the Simons Collaboration.

As of Michaelmas 2020, I have additionally been leading a large research project, Algebraic Foundations of Supersymmetric Quantum Field Theories, which is funded by a Consolidator Grant from the European Research Commission.

From Michaelmas 2021 I will also be taking over from (and attempting to fill the shoes of) Fraser Armstrong as the College’s Fellow for Research. St John’s has generously supported my own research in numerous ways since my arrival, and in this new role I’m looking forward to helping to facilitate and champion the research excellence of the entire St John’s academic community.

Professor Chris Beem

Tutorial Fellow in Mathematics

Click here to read more about Professor Beem

College News

The 2021 Mapleton-Bree Prize

The Mapleton-Bree Prize is awarded annually for a piece of creative work by any junior member of College.  Congratulations to Yijia Tu (2020, Musicology), this year's winner.

150 years of opening up Oxford 

2021 marks the 150th anniversary of the 1871 University Tests Act, which opened the universities of Oxford, Cambridge and Durham to students and staff of any faith.

Professor Compton elected to Lithuanian Academy of Sciences

The Lithuanian Academy of Sciences was founded in 1941 and aims to bring together the most distinguished scientists from Lithuania and abroad.

Viking skeleton found under SJC in 2008 reunited with kinsmen

DNA tests show that the skeleton, one of 35 found buried under College in 2008, is related to another Viking skeleton discovered in Otterup, Central Denmark.

Student in conversation with former Australian Prime Minister

Brian O'Callaghan (2019, Public Finance) interviewed Malcolm Turnbull about the impact of climate denial and the real cost of renewable energy.

Student to represent GB in World Orienteering Championships

Grace Molloy (2019, Physics) has been selected to represent Great Britain in the World Orienteering Championships after fantastic results in the UK trials.

Alumni News

Queen's Birthday Honours 2021

The College warmly congratulates all members of St John’s who received awards in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2021.

Catch up with SJC Online

Our series of monthly talks is taking a summer holiday.  Why not catch up with previous events on the College website?

Alumni Publications

Dr Christopher S. Lightfoot

The Cesnola Collection of Cypriot Art. Terracotta Oil Lamps (The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2021)

Alumni Requests

Do you remember Fuse?

A Dublin-based scholar, in pursuit of a poem by Seamus Heaney, is seeking information about this magazine believed to have been published at St John's in the early 1970s. They are interested in hearing from alumni who have any recollections about the magazine.

If you have information regarding Fuse, please email

Upcoming Events

50 Years of Keith Thomas's Religion and the Decline of Magic

Friday 3 September 2021

Save the Date

Reflections of a President after 40 Years of Women

Saturday 18 September 2021