Montana State University

Aspen Point speakers Series

August 31, 2010 -- By Jody Sanford, College of Letters & Science


Mary Murphy, history professor, talked about Montana during the depression. At the next lecture, Dave Lageson, earth sciences, spoke on the causes of tsunamis, followed by Tim Ford, microbiology, who informed his audience about the public health issues that accompany such events. A few weeks later, Jerry Calvert, political science, made a modest proposal for reforming the state legislature.

No, it's not a new interdisciplinary course offered by L&S. This series of talks was designed for the residents of Aspen Pointe, an active retirement community in Bozeman. In the program, which was launched in the spring of 2005, L&S faculty members regale the enthusiastic audience with accounts of their current research interests in a monthly lecture series.

"This is a class teachers only dream of," said Michael Sexson, professor of English. "The sense of complete engagement permeates the room….If it were possible to rent out an audience, this one would be the one to rent."

Ann Fuchs, the program director at Aspen Pointe, says that's not surprising. "These are active, intellectually-curious folks. They want more than bingo."

Sara Jayne Steen, former dean of the college, said, "It's great for our faculty members to get into the community to share the incredible research they are doing. We know that busy schedules often keep folks from coming up to campus for lectures and talks."

In the fall of 2009 the speakers series began featuring speakers from throughout the university, including speakers from engineering, health and human development, and busness.

Updated: 04/15/2011