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Renowned Biochemist Bruce Alberts Delivers Gonzaga’s 27th Annual O’Leary Lecture March 18

Posted on February 28, 2013 in: Academics, Events, Lectures, Spotlight

SPOKANE, Wash. – Renowned biochemist Bruce Alberts, former president of the National Academy of Sciences who has spearheaded U.S. efforts to improve science, math, and engineering education, will deliver Gonzaga University’s 27th annual O’Leary Lecture titled, “Science and the World’s Future,” 7:30 p.m., Monday, March 18 in the Cataldo Hall Globe Room. The free event is open to the public.

‘Science and the World’s Future’

SPOKANE, Wash. – Renowned biochemist Bruce Alberts, former president of the National Academy of Sciences who has spearheaded U.S. efforts to improve science, math, and engineering education, will deliver Gonzaga University’s 27th annual O’Leary Lecture titled, “Science and the World’s Future,” at 7:30 p.m., Monday, March 18 in the Cataldo Hall Globe Room. The free event is open to the public.

Alberts, the editor-in-chief of Science – the world’s leading journal of original scientific research, global news, and commentary – also will deliver a more specialized talk to Gonzaga science majors at 12:05 p.m., Tuesday, March 19, in the Jepson Center’s Wolff Auditorium. That lecture is titled, “Biology Past and Biology Future: Where Have We Been and Where Are We Going?”

A professor emeritus of biochemistry and biophysics at University of California, San Francisco, Alberts served as one of President Barack Obama’s first three Science Envoys and continues to teach at UCSF. He served two six-year terms as president of the National Academy of Sciences. While there, he helped develop the landmark National Science Education standards that have been implemented in school systems nationwide. This type of “science as inquiry” teaching emphasizes logical, hands-on problem solving, and insists on having evidence for claims that can be confirmed by others.

This idea will be the core of Alberts’ lecture at Gonzaga. He will discuss the necessity for scientists worldwide to maintain, what he calls, the same “values of science: honesty, generosity, and an insistence on evidence while respecting all ideas and opinions regardless of their source of origin.”

More specifically, Alberts will emphasize the significance of “emerging properties” of cells and organisms when discussing the methods of analysis of living organisms and their molecular interactions.

Alberts’ lecture is relevant to local, regional and national efforts for the improvement of education in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, also know as STEM-based education.

Gonzaga annually hosts a distinguished scientist from a major research university or institute as the O’Leary Lecturer for several days, primarily to meet with Gonzaga science majors. The visiting scientist delivers a specialized lecture and is officially introduced as the O’Leary Distinguished Scientist at a public lecture designed for general audiences.

For more on the lecture, please contact Howard L. Glass, director of the Inland Northwest Natural Resources Research Center, at (509) 313-3888.

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