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Two Faculty Lecture Series events planned in February

1/31/2014 —

Penn State Lehigh Valley has announced the first two events in its spring 2014 Faculty Lecture Series. This series brings distinguished faculty speakers from other campuses and universities to share their research with the campus and community. The lectures are free and open to the public.

Feb. 5 at 1 p.m. (room 310) – A New "Family Home Evening" or No Evenings with Family?: Religion, Identity, and Social Change Among LGBT Mormons and their Parents
Lauren J. Joseph, assistant professor of sociology, Penn State Schuylkill

Joseph will present preliminary findings from her research with lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Mormons and ex-Mormons as well as Mormon parents of LGBT individuals. LGBT Mormons and parents are actively grappling with conflict between their identities, their family, and their faith, in response to the Mormon Church’s current policies on homosexuality. Joseph will discuss the personal experiences of LGBT individuals who have chosen to remain active in the Mormon Church as well as those who have left the Church. She will show evidence of social change around the issue of homosexuality within the Mormon community, and highlight the way that recent activism by Mormon parents on behalf of their LGBT kids and by Mormon allies has been launched through the framework of "family"—an especially central institution within the Mormon religious tradition.

Feb. 10 at 1 p.m. (room 302) – The Medical Revolution in Regenerative Medicine: Promises and Challenges of Stem Cells
Gerald P. Schatten, director, Pittsburgh Development Center; director, Division of
Developmental and Regenerative Medicine, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

The 2012 Nobel Prizes to John Gurdon and Shinya Yamanaka for their seminal work in nuclear transfer and induced pluripotency, coupled with the 2010 Nobel Prize to Bob Edwards for pioneering In Vitro Fertilization in humans, attests to the contemporary importance of stem cells and regenerative medicine. This lecture considers: pluripotent stem cells and their utility for modeling complex "diseases in a dish;" whether some cancers have stem cell origins; and, stem cell differentiation into both oocytes and sperm in vitro.

The Faculty Lecture Series is supported by the student activity fee in cooperation with Alumni and Corporate Relations, Teaching International, and the Penn State Lehigh Valley Undergraduate Research Symposium.

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