Purdue University announces fall 2014-15 Presidential Lecture Series

September 22, 2014  


WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Purdue University is pleased to announce the Fall 2014 Presidential Lecture Series, a diverse new series of lectures on policy, leadership, culture and society. The series will feature prominent experts and practitioners from various fields of interest for both academics and the community at-large.

Connected with each public presentation, speakers will be integrated into relevant curricular activities on the West Lafayette campus during their visits. The series will also add speakers at various points during the year.

“One important way we can maximize intellectual opportunity at Purdue is by bringing the world’s best minds and most provocative thinkers to our campus,” said President Mitch Daniels. “The speakers on this fall’s list fit that description, and I’m eager to have them in our midst as they contribute to Purdue’s culture of thought and rigor.”

Sam Allen

Sam Allen 
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All Lectures are free and open to the public.

Sam Allen: “Like a good challenge? Help us double food production by 2050.” Sept. 29, 2:30 p.m. Loeb Playhouse.

Daniels and Deere & Co. CEO – and Purdue alumnus – Sam Allen will discuss meeting the needs of a growing population. Experts estimate the world’s population will exceed 9.5 billion by 2050. How can we help provide food, clothing, shelter and infrastructure for that many people while also conserving land and water? John Deere is developing solutions that draw on superior technology and engineering as well as more than 175 years of experience. Every day, John Deere employees seek new and better ways to achieve the company’s higher purpose of helping people live better lives through its commitment to those linked to the land. A ticket is required for admission. Students must bring IDs for class credit.

Paul Eremenko

Paul Eremenko 
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Paul Eremenko: “Models of Innovation.” Oct. 8, 6:30 p.m. Loeb Playhouse.

Daniels and Paul Eremenko of Google will discuss Project Ara and innovation at Google, DARPA and elsewhere. Eremenko currently heads Project Ara in Google's Advanced Technology & Projects (ATAP) organization. It is an effort to create a modular hardware ecosystem - rivaling the mobile app ecosystem in pace and level of innovation - around smartphones in an effort to deliver the mobile internet to the next 5 billion people. Prior to Google, Eremenko led the Tactical Technology Office at DARPA, where he was responsible for the agency's X-plane, space, robotics and manufacturing programs. Eremenko is also a research affiliate at MIT in the Engineering Systems Division.

Mara Liasson

Mara Liasson 
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Mara Liasson: “A View from Washington.” Oct. 27, 6:30 p.m. Loeb Playhouse.

Mara Liasson is the national political correspondent for NPR. Her reports can be heard regularly on NPR's award-winning newsmagazines All Things Considered and Morning Edition. Liasson provides extensive coverage of politics and policy from Washington, D.C. — focusing on the White House and Congress — and also reports on political trends beyond the Beltway.

Todd Wetzel, director of Purdue Convocations, which is assisting the Office of the President with the series, adds, “The Presidential Lecture Series attracts some of the most notable and creative thinkers imaginable. The magic for Purdue is that we can capitalize upon these opportunities to the benefit of students, faculty and the broader community.” 

Writer: Abby Eddy, Purdue Convocations director of marketing, 765-494-9712, aeeddy@purdue.edu

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