Science Lecture Series-Spring 2019

Spring 2019 Lectures

Lecture Dates: Wednesday, 6 & 27 February, 13 March, Friday 12 April and Late April

Lectures are open to the public and admission is free. Each program includes activities and prizes! Seating is first come, first served - so arrive 15-20 minutes early.

The Science Lecture Series is a forum designed to give students and the Saddleback College community the chance to meet renowned scientists and industry leaders and learn about their area of expertise. This series provides an opportunity to explore an astonishing range of topics with scientific value, including emerging technologies and advancements in research. Each 1.5 hour program includes an introduction of the guest speaker followed by the featured lecture and ends with an open forum discussion in which audience members are encouraged to ask questions of the guest speaker.

Watch lectures on local cable Ch.39 SCTV or online (Show Search: "science").
Recorded lectures are available 1-2 weeks after event date.

Topic: Targeting the Cause of Cystic Fibrosis: Recent Progress

Wednesday 6 February 2019 @ 6:00 PM in SM 313

Dr. Brian Bear, Associate Director Cystic Fibrosis Research Vertex Pharmaceuticals


Watch Dr. Bear's Lecture - Here

Cystic fibrosis is a rare, genetic disease that affects ~89,000 children and adults in the US and Europe.  Treating the underlying cause of the disease has potential to improve lung function and slow down pulmonary decline in patients.  The discovery of two classes of molecules used in the treatment of cystic fibrosis, as well as a future perspective, will be presented.


Topic: HIV Vaccine

Wednesday 27 February 2019 @ 6:00 PM in SM 313

Dr. William Schief, Department of Immunology and Microbiology, The Scripps Research Institute


Abstract coming soon.


Topic: Sea level rise from melting ice sheets: How does it work, what do we know, and what can we do about it?

13 March 2019 @ 6:00 PM in SM 313

 Dr. Eric Rignot, Donald Bren Professor and Chair of Earth System Sciences, University of California Irvine


Glaciers and ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica, and other parts of the world, are melting as a result of climate change from human-induced emission of greenhouse gases. While the rates of melt are small, they changed by one order of magnitude over the last 40 years and will likely increase rapidly in the next 40 years. We are on pace for 1 m sea level rise by the end of the 21st century but the actual change will depend on the rate at which climate is warming up and the rate at which ice sheets will undergo catastrophic decay, both of which are affected by uncertainties. As we will only run this experiment once, it is important to put the recent changes in the context of the longer term (paleo record) and what physics dictates. In that context, the current climate regime is unsustainable and commits ourselves to multiple meters of sea level rise in the coming centuries. A reduction of the rate of decay of polar ice is possible but entails a massive curbing of our greenhouse gas emissions and the usage of carbon sequestration techniques to bring back carbon concentrations in the atmosphere to levels comparable to the 1980s.

Topic: Biomechanics of movement

Friday, 12 April 2019 @ 10:30 AM in SM 313

Dr. Christopher Anderson, Assistant Professor of Biology University of South Dakota


Abstract coming soon


Manya - The Living History of Marie Curie

Wednesday 23 April 2019 @ 6:00 PM in SM 313


Susan Marie Frontczak, Storysmith: Living History Presenter


In her living histories of Marie Curie, Mary Shelley, Eleanor Roosevelt, Irene Castle, Erma Bombeck and Clara Barton, Susan Marie melts, stretches, and reforms the boundaries between theatre, storytelling, and public speaking. These deeply researched programs are presented with no imaginary "fourth wall" between the historical figure and the audience. The audience travels back in time to hear and to speak directly to the historical personage. Furthermore, Susan Marie addresses and responds to questions from the audience as the historical character.


Special thank you to the Associated Student Government of Saddleback College for sponsoring the Science Lecture events since 2010.

We would like to acknowledge Dean Art Nitta and members of the MSE Division for all their support. Particular thank yous go to the members of the Science Lectures committee who develop this program for the benefit of our students. We believe these efforts will inspire students to further explore the myriad of academic and career opportunities in the sciences.

Science Lectures committee members:
Dr. Tony Huntley, Ms. Karen Kelley, Professor Steve Teh, Dr. Christina White and Dr. Jim Zoval

To request future lecture topics, please e-mail Steve Teh