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Popular UW Lecture Series Scheduled in Pinedale March 1

February 23, 2018
Rob Godby, Kristi Hansen and Todd Surovell

The University of Wyoming’s one-day free public lecture series, featuring diverse topics from UW professors, will be offered in Pinedale for the second time Thursday, March 1.

Saturday U -- the half day of college lectures and discussion -- will be in the Sublette County Library’s Lovatt Room, located at 155 S. Tyler Ave. The program begins with light dinner and snacks at 5:30 p.m., followed by welcoming remarks at 5:50 p.m. The guest lectures begin at 6 p.m.

Participants may attend one, two or all three lectures. A question-and-answer session will follow the program.

“During the fall and spring terms, Saturday University visits locations throughout Wyoming discussing today’s most captivating topics,” says Saturday U Coordinator Paul Flesher, a UW religious studies professor.

In its 10th year, Saturday U is a collaborative program that connects popular UW and Wyoming community college professors with lifelong learners. Offered nine times a year -- twice each in Jackson, Gillette and Sheridan, and once in Rock Springs, Pinedale and Cody -- Saturday U is sponsored by the university, the UW Foundation and Wyoming Humanities. The program is presented locally by UW, Wyoming Humanities, Sublette BOCES and Sublette County Libraries.

“Enjoy three intriguing lectures delivered by professors from the University of Wyoming,” Flesher says. “Complimentary dinner and snacks are provided, giving participants an opportunity to engage with the speakers during a roundtable discussion following the three lectures.”

Listed below are program topic descriptions and professors lecturing:

-- 6 p.m.: “Who Gets to Drink?” by Kristi Hansen, UW Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics associate professor.

Hansen says water is a limited resource in most of the western United States, yet growing populations and environmental demands increase pressure on existing supplies.

“Who should be allowed to use it when supplies become scarcer?” Hansen asks.

She will describe how economists think about water allocation among competing users and different uses, drawing lessons for the drought-stricken Upper Colorado River Basin.

-- 6:50 p.m.: “Income Inequality: Its Effects on the USA’s Economic and Political Future,” by Rob Godby, director of UW’s Center for Energy Economics and Public Policy, and economics associate professor.

“We hear almost daily about our country’s political divide, but the United States faces an even more disruptive division, that of increasing income inequality,” Godby says. “As the economic divide has grown over the past two decades, it has enhanced the perception that America is facing a financial crisis as well as a political one.”

Godby will explain what income inequality is and examine the dynamics that have led to the current situation, while providing some hope for the future.

-- 7:40 p.m.: “Wyoming’s First Humans at an Ice Age Mammoth Kill Site,” by Todd Surovell, Department of Anthropology chair and archaeology professor.

The first people to live in Wyoming arrived more than 13,000 years ago after crossing a land bridge from Asia to North America and moving southward through the northern glaciers, Surovell says. Upon arrival, these people encountered many types of large mammals that have since disappeared from New World ecosystems.

At the La Prele mammoth site in Converse County, UW archaeologists have discovered evidence of human predation of a Columbian mammoth as well as a campsite that can shed light on the social organization of Wyoming’s first residents.

For more information, call Flesher at (307) 766-2616 or email For more information about Saturday U, visit the website at

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