STEMinar Series

Spring 2018 STEMinar Series

The STEMinar Series consists of a variety of talks related to Science, Technology, Engineering, and/or Mathematics. These talks are FREE and open to the public and take place throughout the Fall and Spring semesters. All talks take place in the Health and Science Center (HSC), Room 1234 at 7 p.m. unless otherwise noted. For more information about each talk, see below.

RESCHEDULED: Friday, April 6, 2018
Dr. Wesley Ketchum
, Associate Scientist, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory
"Understanding the Universe through Neutrinos"

Neutrinos are among the most abundant particles in the universe, and are constantly around us in our daily lives. In fact, many trillions of them stream through each of us every second! But, because they interact with other particles so rarely, they are very difficult to study and they continue to be mysterious and puzzling to particle physicists. Join Dr. Wesley Ketchum for a description and brief history of the neutrino. He will explain why they are so interesting and talk about current and future efforts to unravel the mysteries surrounding with the hope to better understand our universe.

RESCHEDULED: Saturday, March 3, 2018
Joseph DalSanto, Assistant Professor of Astronomy, College of DuPage
"Extrasolar Planets"

*special time: 7:30 p.m.*

For millennia humans have wondered if there are other planets in the universe. Today, astronomers have answered that question with a resounding yes. In recent years astronomers have discovered several thousand extrasolar planets and have learned much about them – their sizes, masses, orbits and other properties. This presentation will explain how astronomers have found and begun exploring these worlds – and the profound implications of these discoveries.

This talk is free but requires registration. Please register online  or call Continuing Education at (630) 942 2008.


Friday, February 23, 2018
Eric Earley, Ph.D. Student in Neural Engineering, Northwestern University
"Neural Engineering: Designing Bionic Limbs Controlled by the Brain"

From Steve Austin in The Six Million Dollar Man to Luke Skywalker in Star Wars, we have seen countless examples of robotic prostheses that rival or exceed our own biological limbs; but, how close are we to making these devices a reality? Join Eric Earley, Ph.D. candidate and graduate student researcher in the Center for Bionic Medicine at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, as he shares his lab's research on advanced prosthetic limbs.

(this talk is co-sponsored by the Disability Employment Initiative IT Career Pathway) 

Sunday, March 4, 2018
Brian Greene, Theoretical Physicist, Mathematician, and String Theorist
"Chasing Reality: Einstein's Dream and Beyond"

*special place and time: 1:00 p.m. in the Belushi Performance Hall*

(this talk is provided by the Physics Department)

Friday, March 9, 2018
Dr. Andrew N. Jansen, Engineering Research Group Leader, Argonne National Laboratory
"Development of High-Energy Density Lithium-ion Batteries"

Learn the latest research and development in lithium-ion batteries for electrified vehicles that is taking place at Argonne National Laboratory, which is located nearby in southern DuPage County. In this presentation you will learn some of the basic features of how a Li-ion battery operates and what promises it holds for the future. You will also see a short video of a Li-ion battery being made at Argonne. 

Thursday, April 12, 2018
Dr. Mark SubbaRao, Adler Planetarium
"Advancing Education and Research through Immersive Data Visualization"

*special time: 4 p.m.*

The modern digital planetarium isn't just a planetarium anymore; it is a flexible immersive visualization facility. These facilities are powerful tools in many STEM disciplines for education, data exploration, and discovery. This presentation, for students and faculty alike, will focus on how data visualization in immersive environments can be used to covey complex topics in contemporary science and how networking technology can be used to link experts to audiences across the globe.

Friday, April 20, 2018
Dr. Ted Daeschler
, Curator and Professor, Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University
"Great Steps in the History of Life: The Origin of Limbed Vertebrates"

*special time: 7:30 p.m.*

This presentation describes two decades of paleontological exploration and research on Devonian-age vertebrate fossils from Pennsylvania, the Canadian Arctic and Antarctica. Ted Daeschler and his colleagues have discovered a wide diversity of fossil material from the Catskill Formation in north-central Pennsylvania including the earliest known limbed vertebrates in North America. The team has also explored for Devonian vertebrates in a series of expeditions high above the Arctic Circle in Canada's Nunavut Territory. Among the discoveries there is Tiktaalik roseae, an animal that lived 375 million years ago and is a textbook intermediate between finned and limbed vertebrates. Most recently, Daeschler and colleagues returned from working on Devonian fossils in the Transantarctic Range of Southern Victoria Land, Antarctica. This presentation will incorporate the methods of fossil discovery and the science behind this research program exploring biotic diversity in the Age of Fishes and the origin of limbed vertebrates.

(this talk is presented in partnership with ESCONI, The Field Museum, Northern Illinois University, and the Paleontological Society)

Monday, May 7, 2018
Terry Miesle, Native Bee Expert
"Native Bees: Their Abundance and Importance"

*special time: 5:30 p.m.*

When most people think about bees, they either think of the honey bee or the predatory wasp. However, did you know that there are approximately 400 to 500 native bee species in Illinois? These creatures live in wetland, woodland, grassland, and all sorts of different urban habitats. They are an extremely important pollinator in the region and provide for the existence of many plant species which in turn helps animals and humans thrive. Come out for a presentation and tour of native bees provided by Nature Enthusiast, Terry Miesle. Take a look at his flickr.

Past STEMinar Series

Visit our College of DuPage YouTube channel to see videos of past talks, or click on each presenter below.

November 3, 2017
Dr. Pauline Gagnon, Science Communicator
"Improbable Feats and Useless Discoveries"

October 6, 2017
Angel Price, Attractions Engineering Services Manager, Disney's Animal Kingdom
"Engineering My Dream: Redlines Included"

September 15, 2017
Neal Sales-Griffin, CEO of CodeNow
"Starting the First Coding Bootcamp"

March 17, 2017
Dr. Christina Dunbar-Hester, University of Southern California
"Low Power to the People! Media Activism, DIY, and the Challenge of Democratic Technology"

February 23, 2017
Dr. Amanda Petford-Long, Argonne Distinguished Fellow
"Understanding Nanomaterials: How Microscopy Can Help"

November 12, 2016
Prof. Joseph Orgel, PhD, Illinois Institute of Technology
"The Non-Conventional Approach to Science and Engineering"

October 15, 2016
Dr. Shane Larson, Northwestern University and Adler Planetarium
"Astronomy Frontiers: 25 Years Ago and 25 Years From Now"

September 17, 2016
Joe DalSanto, College of DuPage
"Einstein's Theory of Relativity"



Contact Information

STEM Outreach Coordinator
Berg Instructional Center (BIC), Room 2H01B, (630) 942-3021

College of DuPage

425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn IL, 60137

(630) 942-2800 (Main)

(630) 942-3000 (Student Services)

  2018 College of DuPage