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Popular UW Lecture Program Returns to Jackson March 4

March 1, 2017
photos of Nina McConigley, Noah Novogrodsky and Donal Skinner

Diverse topics focusing on Teton County’s immigration economic impact, new American West writing, and the biology of sex and gender will be discussed by three University of Wyoming professors during UW’s popular Saturday U program Saturday, March 4, in Jackson.

The half day of college classes and discussion at the National Museum of Wildlife Art begins with coffee and pastries at 8:30 a.m., followed by welcoming remarks at 8:50 a.m. from UW President Laurie Nichols. The guest lectures begin at 9 a.m. The program is free and open to the public.

Participants may attend one, two or all three lectures. A lunch and question-and-answer session will follow the program at 12:30 p.m.

In its ninth year, Saturday U is a collaborative program that connects popular UW and Wyoming community college professors with lifelong learners. Offered seven times a year -- twice each in Jackson, Gillette and Sheridan; and once in Rock Springs -- Saturday U is sponsored by the university, the UW Foundation and Wyoming Humanities Council, and is presented locally by Central Wyoming College and the National Museum of Wildlife Art.

Listed below are program topic descriptions and professors lecturing:

9-10 a.m. -- “An Economy That Works: Measuring Immigrant Contributions to Teton County,” Noah Novogrodsky, UW College of Law professor.

Novogrodsky led a team of law students conducting an economic impact study of the contributions immigrants make to Teton County. The study measures the business impact of immigrant workers, from employees in tourism and hospitality to small-business owners and investors, to foreign students who are authorized to work.

Novogrodsky’s discussion of the study reveals how complex immigration debates are; the unique political alliances that surround the subject; and what is likely to happen or not happen on immigration matters under the administration of President Donald Trump.

For more information about Novogrodsky’s lecture, view his interview at: www.youtube.com/watch?v=lD8zQBRlG-k&feature=youtu.be&list=PL54875028189358FB.

10:15-11:15 a.m. -- “Writing the New American West: Postfrontier Literature,” Nina McConigley, UW Honors Program assistant professor.

Writing about the American West has moved well beyond literature featuring the American Old West or frontier narratives typically set in the century spanning the late 18th and the late 19th centuries.

“In its place, a new understanding of contemporary Western writing is emerging,” McConigley says. “Sometimes referred to as positron literature, the more recent literary output of the region tends to engage in a reinterpretation of the region, calling into question the ways in which it has been defined in the past.”

For more information about McConigley’s lecture, view her interview at: www.youtube.com/watch?v=6D2vZpRMDug&feature=youtu.be&list=PL54875028189358FB.

11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. -- “The Biology of Sex, Gender and Orientation,” Donal Skinner, Department of Zoology and Physiology professor and department chair.

From a biological perspective, sexual development and differentiation do not neatly align with societal expectations, Skinner says. During the gestation process, exposure to a variety of hormones “programs” numerous sex organs -- the genitalia, the brain and even the heart -- to behave in different ways.

“Recent research elucidates some of the mechanisms guiding this programming and the rich mosaic of potential outcomes they can produce,” he adds.

The next spring Saturday U program is April 22 in Rock Springs.

For more information, visit the Saturday U website at www.uwyo.edu/saturdayu/.


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