Lecture Series on Astronomical Affairs

The Earth Sciences and Science Education Department is launching the first Jack Mack Lecture Series in Astronomy and Planetary Science this semester. The lectures, which will be held in the evening, are free and open to the public.

Jack Mack, professor emeritus of earth science and science education, will present the first lecture on Wednesday, March 4, at 8:00 p.m. in Science Building 213. The lecture, “It Came from Outer Space! Forty Years of Explosive Progress in Astronomy,” will discuss why our picture of the universe is developing at an incredible rate. Mack retired in 2008 after 35 years of service to the college.

John Grant, a geologist at the Center for Earth and Planetary Studies at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum, will present “Driving and Orbiting the Red Planet: New Insights from the Exploration of Mars” on Wednesday, April 1, at 8:00 p.m. in Science Building 213. Grant, who served at Buffalo State and who co-taught a class with Mack, is a member of the Science Team for the Mars Exploration Rovers and for the HiRISE camera orbiting Mars on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft.

Kevin K. Williams, assistant professor of earth sciences and science education, is a planetary geologist. “It’s very exciting to be able to honor Jack this way,” he said. “Jack is a true scholar with a wide range of interests, including technology in the classroom and the technology that has greatly increased our understanding of our solar system and the universe.”

This year’s lectures are sponsored by the Faculty-Student Association. The series will be held annually.