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UW’s Saturday U Program Comes to Gillette Nov. 6

October 31, 2014
Carol Frost and Tracey Patton

The final fall session of Saturday U -- the University of Wyoming's one-day college education program -- is scheduled Thursday, Nov. 6, in Gillette.

The free public event of college classes and discussion begins with opening remarks at 5:50 p.m. in the main building at Gillette College Room 167, located at the west entrance.

Three professors from Gillette College and UW will enlighten and entertain with lectures from 6-8 p.m. No pre-registration is necessary, and doors open at 5:30 p.m. The program begins with a free buffet-style small meal and will end with dessert and discussion during a concluding reception.

Saturday University is a collaborative program connecting popular UW and community college professors with Wyoming residents who have a desire to learn. In its sixth year, Saturday U is sponsored by the UW Outreach School, UW Foundation and the Wyoming Humanities Council. The local program is presented by the UW Outreach School and Gillette College.

Events are held six times a year -- twice each in Jackson, Gillette and Sheridan.

Listed are program topic descriptions and UW and Gillette College representatives lecturing:

6 p.m. -- “A Biological Arms Race,” Holly Martin, Gillette College biology instructor. Martin’s talk examines the complex and ever changing relationship between the immune system and bacteria. She says the human body carries 10 times as many bacterial cells as human cells. Most are harmless or even beneficial, but a small minority can wreak havoc by causing infections.

“While the immune system works to drive out those attacking intruders, trespassing bacteria do not just lie down and die. They fight back,” she says. “The immune system responds with counter-measures, which can themselves be countered.”

6:40 p.m. -- “Gender, Whiteness, and Power in Rodeo: Breaking Away from the Ties of Sexism and Racism,” Tracey Owens Patton, UW African American and Diaspora Studies director and Department of Communications and Journalism professor; and Sally Schedlock, professional rodeo participant and UW communications master’s degree graduate.

Owens Patton and Schedlock say cowgirls and cowboys have hooked the American imagination with the lure of freedom and adventure since the turn of the 20th century. They say that rodeo has transcended into popular culture as a sport that is emblematic of all things “Western.” The two speakers visually explore how race, gender and other issues of identity complicate the mythic historical narrative of the West.

7:20 pm -- “Wyoming’s Geologic Secrets,” Carol Frost, UW Department of Geology professor.

Wyoming’s spectacular scenery, dinosaur remains, and abundant coal, oil and gas, trona and uranium are well known and widely appreciated assets. However, Frost says there is much more preserved in Wyoming’s rocks than is generally known. Her talk uncovers and reveals some of the geologic secrets tucked away in various places across the state.

The spring term of Saturday U resumes March 7 in Jackson.

For more information about Saturday U, visit the Saturday U website at

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