Faculty Engage Students Through Smithsonian Exhibit

Published: October 15, 2015 | Author: Tommy Gugino | Read Time: 2 minutes

Smithsonian Statue in Origins Exhibit in Cedar CitySeveral faculty members from Southern Utah University will explore the origins of humans through panel presentations and workshops in association with the Cedar City Library’s traveling Smithsonian Museum exhibit on human origins. The library will be presenting several free programs in conjunction with the exhibit, which begins October 16 and runs through November 12.

Emily Dean, associate professor of anthropology, was a consultation committee member for the exhibit, "Exploring human origins: What does it mean to be human?,” along with Matt Nickerson, professor of library media, and Hussein Samha, professor of chemistry.

27 students from Dean’s class will volunteer time at the exhibit, as well as attend presentations. “The exhibit will provide a wonderful opportunity for the students, and the community, to learn the facts surrounding human evolution and engage in interesting discussions about the topics,” said Dean.

Helen Boswell, associate professor of biology, Bill Heyborne, assistant professor of biology, Shobha Gurung, associate professor of sociology, and Lee Montgomery, professor of education, along with Samha and Dean will sit on panel discussions during the exhibit. Kim Congdon, lecturer of biology, will host a lecture on October 26.

Lauren McAfee, SUU alumna and grant and development officer for the Cedar City Library, said of the exhibit, “It will allow people to understand one another and where we come from, which will help unite people together.”

The Cedar City Library is one of 19 in the nation, and the only one in Utah, to host the exhibit, which is a replica of one currently at the Smithsonian Museum. The 12,000-square-foot exhibit will feature panels, hands on displays and videos inviting audiences to explore milestones in the evolutionary journey of becoming human and showing advancements that define the unique position of humans in the history of life.

For a full listing of events, visit cedarcitylibrary.org.

"Exploring human origins: What does it mean to be human?" was organized by the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History in collaboration with the American Library Association.

The project was made possible through the support of a grant from the John Templeton Foundation and support from the Peter Buck Human Origins Fund.

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