Speaker’s Bureau

Speaker’s Bureau

St. Joseph’s College is proud of its faculty and the very high level of academic excellence that permeates the entire institution. In addition, St. Joseph’s is deeply committed to a spirit of service to the community.

These two central pillars, scholarship and service, inform and define the culture of SJC. In merging the two, St. Joseph’s College is pleased to provide a speaker’s bureau to support local academic, educational and cultural institutions or organizations in our common goal. 

Listed below is a collection of talks and presentations that SJC faculty members are prepared to give, free of charge. Institutions wishing to avail themselves of this service are invited to contact the individual faculty member, directly, to negotiate the scheduling of a presentation.

Use the form at the bottom of this page to ask any questions to book a presentation.

Biology

The Origins Of Microbiology Education in the United States: Brooklyn’s Hoagland Laboratory

Faculty Member's Name: Michael Hanophy, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information: [email protected]

Description of Presentation: Microbiology was first established as a field of scientific study in the late 19th century when many of the techniques for the cultivation, identification and observation of microbes were first developed. A new scientific field required education, and Brooklyn’s Hoagland Laboratory at Long Island College Hospital — the first laboratory in the United States erected, equipped, and endowed for the sole purpose of bacteriology — was the first institution in the world ever to offer a course in the study of microbiology.

Intended Audience: General.

Hard/software Needs: A computer with PowerPoint, a projector and a screen.


Alexander Fleming, Biofilms and the First World War

Faculty Member's Name: Michael Hanophy, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information: [email protected]

Description of Presentation: For most of the history of microbiology, bacteria have been grown in laboratories as pure cultures, in test tubes and on petri dishes. Yet we have always known that bacteria really grow in the environment as mixed communities attached to surfaces. Significant research into this type of bacterial growth, known as “biofilm biology,” did not even begin until the 1990s. However, some of the earliest work ever done on biofilms, particularly medically significant ones, was conducted by a young Alexander Fleming, long before his Nobel Prize-winning work on penicillin.

Intended Audience: General.

Hard/software Needs: A computer with PowerPoint, a projector and a screen.


Chaim Weitzmann, World War I and the Acetone-Butanol Fermentation

Faculty Member's Name: Michael Hanophy, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information: [email protected]

Description of Presentation: The era of the First World War was a time of great scientific advances, including many in the field of microbiology. Among these was Chaim Weizmann’s development of the acetone-butanol-ethanol fermentation, the microbial process developed for large-scale chemical production. In addition to the importance of acetone and butanol production to the Allied war effort, patents of Weitzmann’s techniques indicate that he was the first ever to develop a procedure to modify and improve an industrial bacterial strain.

Intended Audience: General.

Hard/software Needs: A computer with PowerPoint, a projector and a screen.

Computer Science

Quantum Computers and Shor's Algorithm

Faculty Member's Name: Bill McAllister

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: This next generation of computers will be made from a different building block than that of our current computers, and will have the ability to communicate with each other at speeds faster than the speed of light. But do they already exist, and if so how are they being used?

Intended Audience: High school students.

Hard/software Needs: Ability to project PowerPoint slides.

Development

Changing Organizations — Effectively!

Faculty Member's NameAlan G. Vitters, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: The presentation focuses on a basic model for managing organization change and development. Specific strategies are addressed that use structural and process change to enhance effectiveness and efficiency.

Intended Audience: Varied — to be customized.

Hard/software Needs: Overhead projector to support a PC laptop.

Education

Let The Games Begin! Supporting Literacy at a Play-Based Laboratory Preschool

Children at the Dillon Center sitting around a table doing an art projectFaculty Member's NameKaren Russo, Ed.D. and Susan Straut Collard, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected] and [email protected]

Description of Presentation: This multimedia presentation will focus on the interactions of three-, four-, and five-year-olds enrolled in a play-based laboratory pre-school learning environment. The presenters assert that these children are abundantly prepared to read and write, although formalized literacy instruction is not part of the school’s curriculum. During a 20-minute slideshow, this evidence is captured by video and still photographs of play activities that reveal children’s engagement with literacy. In addition, interviews with children, their parents and their teachers will communicate the importance of play and its critical role in literacy development.

Intended Audience: Parents, teachers and early childhood students.

Hard/software Needs: Equipment to display PowerPoint and audio for PowerPoint.

Family / Public Communications & Youth Athletics

Perception of Adult-To-Child Communication in Youth Athletics

Faculty Member's NameJoe Ross, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: What messages do parents and coaches believe that they are sending to children in the context of youth athletics? What messages do children report that they are receiving…and how closely do these perceptions match? Of greatest import, what is the impact of such messages on the self-concept and overall well-being of the child/athlete? The speaker utilizes interviews with participants, observations of youth leagues and review of past research in offering a discussion/presentation on this important topic.

Intended Audience: Replete with stories and anecdotes, this topic may be presented in a light yet meaningful manner to a “general” audience of families, players and coaches (e.g., a CYO breakfast or a Little League dinner). It has also been adapted and delivered to more targeted audiences of youth-league coaches and league directors, with specific emphasis on the impact of messages — both intended and unintended — on the well-being of the child.

Hard/software Needs: None.

Health Care

Medicare — Understanding the Basics

Faculty Member's NameJohn Sardelis, Dr.P.H.

Faculty Contact Information: [email protected]

Description of Presentation: Medicare is a vital benefit for many of the elderly and disabled. However, choosing the best coverages can be challenging. In this presentation, you will learn about Medicare's basic coverages and how to access some important beneficiary resources.

Intended Audience: Adults 60 and up.

Hard/software Needs: None.


The Journey of Dementia

Faculty Member's NameCarolyn Gallogly, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: This presentation will describe the stages of the caregiving process for a family whose loved one has been diagnosed with dementia. Not only will the stages of caregiving be addressed, but the services most appropriate to each stage will also be discussed.

Intended Audience: Community members.

Hard/software Needs: It would be helpful, but not mandatory, to have presentation equipment for PowerPoint slides.


Lessons from the Lab: Energy Healing Experiments on Cancer

Faculty Member's NameWilliam Bengston, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: Dr. Bengston has conducted more than a dozen experiments on mice in half a dozen labs, including three medical schools. The data from these experiments indicate reliable full lifespan cures of mice infected with normally fatal cancers. These cures have been replicated by skeptical volunteers using “energy healing” techniques which Dr. Bengston helped to develop. Clinically, these same healing techniques have also been applied to selected individuals with positive results. In addition, Dr. Bengston’s research has looked at some correlates to healing, including EEG and fMRI entrainment, and anomalous geomagnetic micro-pulsations in the surrounding space of healing events.

This talk will summarize some of these data, and will offer some thoughts on what “lessons” can be learned from the research. There will be variation in the amount of evidence for each lesson, and the presenter will try to prioritize what can confidently be concluded and what remains as speculation. Confident conclusions will include the simple statement that energy healing can cure cancer under controlled laboratory conditions. Speculation will include such questions as whether healing can be taught. In all cases the “take home” message will be the importance of basic research for the energy healing community.

Intended Audience: Interested lay people; students.

Hard/software Needs: PowerPoint and a projector.

History

Naked Quakers, Witches and Puritans: Life in the Early Massachusetts Bay Colony

Faculty Member's NameHeather E. Barry, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: This presentation gives an accurate portrayal of society in the seventeenth-century Massachusetts Bay Colony. The religious beliefs of Puritans will be explained. How early Quakers and witches threatened Puritan society will also be discussed.

Intended Audience: High school and undergraduate college students.

Hard/software Needs: A computer with internet connection and a projector to show a PowerPoint presentation is needed.


How Big Government Won the West

How Big Government Won the West book coverFaculty Member's NameSteve Rockwell, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: Dr. Rockwell's research focuses on the important and intrusive activities of the federal government in the nineteenth century. The nineteenth-century United States has long been considered an era of small government and free enterprise, but nineteenth-century America was profoundly influenced by federal public policy. Dr. Rockwell's talk includes discussion of the federal government's roles in westward expansion and U.S. Indian policy, the federal government's early involvement in the development of infrastructure and communications policy, federal regulation of important sectors of the economy and the federal government's relationship to slavery. The presentation challenges us to consider a new interpretation of the federal government's role in America's first century.

Intended Audience: Any.

Hard/software Needs: None.

Mathematics

The Optimal Basketball Free Throw

DiagramFaculty Member's NameDavid Seppala-Holtzman, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: When attempting a free throw in basketball, the player has essentially two components under his or her control: the angle of the shot and the force with which the ball is thrown. We find the shot most forgiving of error.

Intended Audience: General.

Hard/software Needs: A computer with PowerPoint, a projector and a screen.


What is the Shape of the Universe?

Faculty Member's NameDavid Seppala-Holtzman, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: This presentation makes an elementary case for the universe being a hypersphere, S3. Higher dimensions are introduced along with generalized definitions of spheres and balls. That the universe is a hypersphere then follows directly from the properties of S3 and what we know of the universe.

Intended Audience: This talk can be given to an advanced high school class or to college undergraduates.

Hard/software Needs: A PC with PowerPoint software, a projector and a screen.


Converging on the Eye of God

Spiral diagramFaculty Member's NameDavid Seppala-Holtzman, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: The "Eye of God" is the name given to the perceived center of the golden spiral that is generated by chopping off smaller and smaller golden rectangles from a given one. It turns out that the coordinates of the Eye of God arise in a most unexpected way.

Intended Audience: This talk can be given to an advanced high school class or to college undergraduates.

Hard/software Needs: A PC with PowerPoint software, a projector and a screen.


Art and Mathematics: Making Beautiful Music Together

Faculty Member's NameDavid Seppala-Holtzman, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: This presentation seeks to highlight the relationship between mathematics and art by focusing upon the rich area where they intersect.

Intended Audience: Upper-level high school or college undergraduates.

Hard/software Needs: A computer with PowerPoint, a projector and a screen.


Is There Intelligent Extraterrestrial Civilizations, Most Probably

Faculty Member's NameBill McAllister

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: Estimating the number of intelligent extraterrestrial civilizations currently in the universe using probabilities that reflect scientific measurements, observations and “reasonable” assumptions.

Intended Audience: 14-years-old and above, especially good for students above eighth grade.

Hard/software Needs: Ability to project PowerPoint slides.


Pi, the Golden Ratio And the Great Pyramid at Giza

Faculty Member's NameBill McAllister

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: Mathematicians and archeologists generally agree that at the time the great pyramid at Giza was built, the ancient Egyptians did not have knowledge of the two mathematical constants PI and the Golden Ratio. Yet, they are an integral part of the pyramid’s dimensions. Are the scientists wrong, did aliens help design the structure as some conjecture or is there some other more plausible explanation?

Intended Audience: This talk can be given to an advanced high school class or to college undergraduates.

Hard/software Needs: A PC with PowerPoint software, a projector and a screen.


Mathematics in Popular Culture

Teaching Mathematics Using Popular Culture book coverFaculty Member's NameElana Reiser, Ed.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: In “A Beautiful Mind,” John Nash is a mathematical genius with psychological problems. There are also scores of other movies and media that include math in a less traditional way. You have probably seen this yourself in TV shows such as “The Simpsons,” “The Big Bang Theory,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” or “Grey’s Anatomy,” and movies such as “Moneyball” or “The Fault in Our Stars” — perhaps without even realizing it. In this presentation, we explore a curated selection of these popular culture moments with a three-step focus on learning background mathematical information, viewing pertinent media clips and engaging in interactive activities.

Intended Audience: Middle school students and up.

Hard/software Needs: A PC with PowerPoint, a projector and a screen.


Equalities Flow Downhill

Faculty Member's NameCheyne Miller, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: Modern mathematics has brought the use of "diagrams" to replace many of the traditional equations that society thinks of when they think about mathematics. In this talk, we discuss how equality can be viewed through the lens of a "commutative diagram" using very simple examples such as "2+0 = 2.”  After we look at some diagrams, we can consider some questions: Where are these diagrams hidden in any math class? Why do some research mathematicians use these diagrams?

Intended Audience: This talk can be given to a general audience.

Hard/software Needs: A projector and a screen with HDMI or VGA hookup. 


The Shape of Data

Shape of Data exampleFaculty Member's NameCheyne Miller, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: The most common ways of studying data are very restrictive in the way they allow us to see any "shape" the dataset might have. Recently, mathematicians have been applying "topology" to the increasingly data-wild world around us to allow for a closer, more open-minded look at what the shape of a dataset might be.

Intended Audience: This talk can be adapted to any audience (general to advanced undergraduate and possibly beyond).

Hard/software Needs: Flexible — either a board or a projector and a screen with HDMI or VGA hookup.  

Philosophy

Philosophical Inquiry and Children

Faculty Member's NameWendy C. Turgeon, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: Children have a natural interest in the big questions of philosophy but we seldom notice this. The educational system focuses on the important basic skills of reading and writing but what is missed when we ignore the curiosity of the questioning child? In this talk I will share how children have a natural philosophical sense of wonder and in what ways educators and parents can encourage young people to become more reflective and aware of the world around them. In engaging in philosophical inquiry with children we discover our own “inner philosopher.” The source for such explorations is nearby: children’s stories and daily life.

Intended Audience: Educators, parents, individuals interested in education.

Hard/software Needs: Projector and screen preferable, but not required.

http://wendycturgeon.org

Raising Ethical Children and Young People

Faculty Member's Name: Wendy C. Turgeon

Faculty Contact Information: [email protected]

We all care that our children and young people grow up with sound values but how best can we be sure this happens? While there is no guarantee, encouraging ethical inquiry offers children the opportunity to explore their values and become more grounded in what is good and true. What does “ethical inquiry” mean and how does it differ from other value programs that we find in education and in the home? In this talk I will outline what ethical inquiry entails and explore how this approach avoids the dangers of indoctrination and relativism. This talk can be focused on young children or on teens, as requested.

Intended Audience: Educators, parents, individuals interested in ethics and morality.

Hard/software Needs: Projector and screen preferable, but not required.

http://wendycturgeon.org

Psychology

Understanding Depression

Peter LinFaculty Member's NamePeter Lin, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: A licensed psychologist will provide basic information on diagnosis, etiology, prognosis and treatment of mood disorders.

Intended Audience: Community members.

Hard/software Needs: PowerPoint, laptop and video software.


When Freud Meets Buddha: The Application of Zen in Psychotherapy

Faculty Member's NamePeter Lin, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Peter Lin in Zen GardenDescription of Presentation: In the past several decades, mindfulness training has increasingly been integrated into Western psychotherapy practice. The number of articles that have been published on mindfulness-based intervention has increased enormously in recent years. In general, the mindfulness literature has been written by Western practitioners who have had training in various traditions of Buddhist meditation. The perspective of Asian practitioners who have training in both Western psychotherapy and in Eastern Buddhism continues to be rare. Dr. Lin is a Western trained psychologist and a Chan (Chinese Zen) practitioner who grew up in the Buddhist tradition. This presentation will discuss mindfulness from several different perspectives. 

Intended Audience: Community members.

Hard/software Needs: PowerPoint, laptop and video software.

Religious Studies

The Book that Changed the World: The KJB Turns 400

Faculty Member's NameThomas Petriano, Ph.D.

Faculty Contact Information[email protected]

Description of Presentation: This presentation will focus on how the KJB came to be and its ongoing influence on culture, language and history. 

Intended Audience: College students and adult groups.

Hard/software Needs: None.

Questions or Want to Book A Presentation?

Some of our talks might fit other categories as well. If you would like any recommendations, have a question or want to book a presentation please use the form below.

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