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Gannon Lecture Celebrates Success of GSAS Alumni










Gannon lecture celebrates Success of GSAS Alumni 


In recent years, the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS) has hosted physicists, poets, powerbrokers and other distinguished guests to discuss topics of their expertise as part of its popular Gannon lecture Series. 

At the most recent lecture, which took place during this year’s Communitas, GSAS’s annual alumni reunion, Paul Chu, Ph.D., GSAS ’65, explained his research on superconductivity and outlined his dreams for the advancement of science, technology and education in the 21st century.  Chu is the executive director of the Texas Center for Superconductivity and president of the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.

During his address, Chu, who received the National Medal of Science, the top honor given to a U.S. scientist, for his work in achieving stable superconductivity at a temperature above 90 degrees Kelvin, shared his dream for a future where high temperature superconductors (HTS) power the world’s energy and transportation sources cleanly and efficiently.  HTS, he said, can play a critical role in making the world’s environment cleaner.

Chu also explained how GSAS gave him the confidence to pursue his passion.  “I wanted to be a scientist, but I was timid,” he recalled.  At Fordham, I could work at my own pace, and that developed my confidence.” 

Started in the fall of 1980, the semiannual lecture series provides outstanding scholars the opportunity to connect with current students and also gives them a forum to discuss some of the most important issues facing the world today.  In recent years, GSAS has invited alumni to celebrate their professional success in this public forum.

Last year, Martin Beck Matuštík, Ph.D., GSAS ’91, a professor of philosophy at Purdue University, addressed fellow alumni on post-secular mediations on radical evil.  Peter Quinn, GSAS ’75, author of the novel Banished Children of Eve and winner of the 1995 American Book award, discussed the writing process during the Gannon Lecture at Communitas ’07.

Rabbi Alan Brill, Ph.D., GSAS ’94, a specialist in interfaith relations, will deliver the Fall Gannon Lecture on October 6, 2008, while noted neuroscientist John Disterhoft, Ph.D., GSAS ’68 and ’71, will speak at next spring’s Communitas.

Previous Gannon Lecturers

Martin Beck Matustik Peter Quinn
Martin Beck Matustik, 
Ph.D., GSAS '91
Peter Quinn, 
Ph.D., GSAS '75



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