College-wide events

Thursday, Nov. 14, 2019, 7 p.m.

Smith Hall, Room 100

207 Pleasant Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Covestro Lecture: Developing Alternatives to Oil

Join us for a public lecture on renewable resources

The Center for Sustainable Polymers is proud to host:

"Developing Alternatives to Oil as Feedstocks for our Chemicals and Liquid Fuels"

Presented by Professor Karen Goldberg University of Pennsylvania

6:30 p.m. – Doors open and refreshments
7 p.m. – Free Public Lecture


Registration is requested. Seating is first-come, first-served the day of the event.

About the lecture

The call for reducing CO2 emissions and moving to renewable energy sources has never been louder than it is today. But as society moves away from oil as a primary energy source, we need to develop other sustainable sources for our liquid fuels. Furthermore, we must also re-envision our chemical industry and economy.

Gasoline and other liquid fuels are the major products that are made from oil, but oil is also the source of the chemicals that are used to make most all of the consumer goods that we have come to rely on. Our medicines, detergents, paints, plastics, fibers, fabrics, and almost everything we use on a daily basis, are currently derived from petroleum. The carbon-based building blocks used to make all these consumer goods have been available in sufficient supply and at low cost due to the economy of scale of the enormous oil refining industry. Fundamentally new pathways, from new sources, to the chemicals and liquid fuels that we depend on must be developed to successfully transition to a sustainable future.

In this presentation, Goldberg will describe the history of how we got to our current energy landscape, projections on where we are going, and also include some of the exciting strategies that scientists are pursuing to allow us to use natural gas and carbon dioxide to prepare our chemicals and fuels in the future.

About the speaker

Karen Goldberg received her A.B. degree from Barnard College of Columbia University in New York City. As an undergraduate, she pursued research projects with Professor Roald Hoffmann at Cornell University, Professor Stephen Lippard at Columbia University, and Dr. Tom Graedel and Dr. Steven Bertz at AT&T Laboratories. She then went on to the University of California at Berkeley where she earned her Ph.D. in Chemistry working with Professor Robert Bergman.

Following a postdoctoral year with Professor Bruce Bursten at The Ohio State University, Goldberg joined the faculty at Illinois State University, a primarily undergraduate institution in Normal, IL. In 1995, she moved to the University of Washington (UW) as Assistant Professor of Chemistry. She was awarded tenure at UW and rose through the ranks to full Professor. In 2007 she became the first Raymon E. and Rosellen M. Lawton Distinguished Scholar in Chemistry, and in 2010 she became the first Nicole A. Boand Endowed Professor of Chemistry.

Goldberg served as director of the first National Science Foundation-funded Phase II Center for Chemical Innovation (CCI), the Center for Enabling New Technologies through Catalysis (CENTC) from 2007-17. In 2107, she moved to the University of Pennsylvania as a Vagelos Professor of Energy Research and is the inaugural Director of the Vagelos Institute of Energy Science and Technology (VIEST).

About the Center for Sustainable Polymers

The National Science Foundation Center for Sustainable Polymers (CSP) works to transform how plastics are made, unmade, and remade through innovative research, engaging education, and diverse partnerships that together foster environmental stewardship. CSP participants aim to design, prepare, and implement polymers derived from renewable resources for a wide range of advanced applications, and to promote future economic development, energy efficiency, and environmental sustainability in the emergent area of biobased products.

This lecture is sponsored by Covestro, a world-leading manufacturer of high-tech polymer materials for key industries. In addition to Covestro, this public lecture is sponsored by the University of Minnesota’s Center for Sustainable Polymers, the Department of Chemistry and the Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science.

Friday, Nov. 15, 2019, 3:35 p.m.

John T. Tate Hall, Room 101

HSTM Colloquium: The Methodologists - Following the Scientists who make Tools, not Facts

HSTM Colloquium for Fall 2019 are held in Tate 101 at 3:35pm. Refreshments served at 3:25pm.

For more information click here: November 15 Colloquium: The Methodologists - Following the Scientists who make Tools, not Facts

Friday, Nov. 15, 2019, 8 p.m.

Presentation begins at 8 p.m. in John T. Tate Hall, 101; telescope observing around 8:30 p.m. in Tate 510

Minnesota Institute for Astrophysics Public Telescope Viewing

Join us every Friday night during the University’s Fall and Spring semesters for rooftop observing through our historic telescope in the dome of the John T. Tate Hall. There will be a presentation followed by outdoor observing (weather-permitting). You will have the chance to observe some of the same celestial objects that have inspired sky-gazers throughout history!

Afterwards, if weather allows, attendees have the opportunity to view the sky through multiple 8-inch reflecting telescopes, operated by the staff and provided by the Minnesota Institute for Astrophysics. Additionally, we provide free star maps (e.g. and are happy to show visitors how to use them. Throughout the evening, we encourage questions from the audience and enjoy discussing topics ranging from backyard astronomy to the latest scientific discoveries.

The presentation begins at 8:00pm in the Tate Laboratory of Physicsroom 101. Telescope observing usually begins around 8:25-8:30pm upstairs in Tate 510.

The presentation and outdoor observing are free for all to attend!

Sign up for the MIfA outreach email 

Sunday, Nov. 17, 2019, Noon through Sunday, Nov. 17, 2019, 2 p.m.

Bell Museum, Ruth and John Huss Observation Deck

Solar Sunday

Telescopes aren’t just for night observing. We’ll have a variety of our solar telescopes out on our observation deck for safe solar viewing as well as some hands-on interactive activities to better understand our nearest star, the Sun.

Solar Sundays are weather dependent—we need clear skies to see the Sun. If the weather does not allow for good viewing conditions, the activity will be canceled.

What you need

Dress for the weather, this includes sunscreen! It may be cold outside, but even then you can still get a sunburn. Always wear sunscreen when participating in outdoor activities.

Solar safety

Our telescope equipment utilizes safe Sun viewing methods; filtering the sunlight and projecting the sunlight.

Solar filters include white light filters that block 99.999 percent of incoming sunlight, safely allowing us to see any sunspots that might be visible.

H-alpha SolarMax II telescope filters out all the colors of sunlight except a specific red light (656nm) to allow us to see features such as solar prominences along the edge of the Sun.

Sunspotters use a different method to safely view the Sun. They utilize mirrors and lenses to project the Sun safely onto a screen (piece of paper). You can draw/trace your own Sun and sunspots to start our own solar data log.


Free with gallery admission

Monday, Nov. 18, 2019, 11:30 a.m. through Monday, Nov. 18, 2019, 1 p.m.

Walter Library, Room 101
117 Pleasant Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455  

Dean's Lunch and Learn featuring the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geo-Engineering

Join Dean Kaveh and department head Joe Labuz for a closer look at some of the innovations taking place in the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geo- Engineering.

Professor Miki Hondzo will discuss his work in the area of “Ecological Fluid Mechanics,” which is the study of the interaction between moving fluids in nature and the physiology/metabolism of organisms. His research group at the University of Minnesota conducts laboratory and field measurements to quantify the interaction between moving fluids and freshwater aquatic organisms, including various types of algae, bacteria, macro-invertebrates, and fish. Professor Hondzo will present a sample of his research group’s laboratory and field measurements with the focus on ecological fluid mechanics.

Alumni from all academic majors are welcome.


This event is free but pre-registration is required. Register by Nov. 8.

Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2019, 3:30 p.m.

Keller Hall, Room 3-180


CSE Dean's "State of the College" Address

College of Science and Engineering faculty and staff colleagues are invited to join this year's "State of the College" address.
3 p.m - Refreshments
3:30-4:30 p.m. - Presentation
3:40 p.m. - Special visit by University President Joan Gabel

This event is an opportunity for CSE faculty and staff to hear directly from CSE Dean, Mos Kaveh, about the current status and plans of the College of Science and Engineering. During a short visit by President Gabel, she will share her larger vision for the University and how she thinks CSE can play a role in achieving her goals.

Dean Kaveh's presentation will provide an update on facilities, demand and demographics for faculty and students, faculty and staff awards, major research grants received by CSE faculty, budget issues, and CSE's fundraising campaign.

There will be time at the end of the presentation for questions and comments from the audience.


Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2019, 5 p.m. through Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2019, 8:30 p.m.

Bell Museum

Bell Museum After Hours: Soundwaves

Enjoy an evening at the museum! Curate your night from a host of activities, including sketching in the galleries, art-making activities, a show in the Whitney and Elizabeth MacMillan Planetarium, and stargazing on the Ruth and John Huss Observation Deck (weather permitting).

Sketching theme: Draw from a collection of critters that are known for making sounds like frogs, birds and cicadas.

Hands-on activity: Play with toys that focus on sounds and waves in one of our classrooms.

Diorama Tours

Tours begin in Horizon Hall at 6:15 and 7:15 pm.

Dive deep into the dioramas with Daniel Stanton, interim curator of lichens and bryophytes. Learn about how our native plants defend themselves against predators, amazing adaptations, and Minnesota’s biodiversity—and threats to it.

Special Guest

Environmental Futurisms: Sound, Technology, and Imagination
Michael Wilson, a 2019-20 showcase artist, records sounds in nature and mixes them in his work. His award-winning 2017 audio work, Elcrys, imagines a future in which elk have not been seen in nearly a generation, and scientists attempt to lure the last known herd of elk down out of the mountains with cybernetic replications of elk calls. Here sound is central to humanity’s last, desperate effort to make contact with a species at the edge.

At After Hours: Soundwaves, Wilson will have his equipment set up in Horizon Hall to help guests arrange and sculpt natural sound, using sound design tools to manifest possible future environmental realities. Add effects to different sounds, change their pitches, and more, to help create a “Bell composition” with your audio experiments.


6 & 7 pm: Sounds From Space

Click here for tickets and availability.

Activities free with gallery admission. Planetarium ticket fees apply.

Advance tickets for planetarium shows are available up to three weeks ahead of time via the link above. If you are a current Bell member, please log in first, to receive your discounted tickets.

Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019, 1 p.m. through Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019, 4 p.m.

East Bank Campus

Science & Engineering Innovation Value Proposition Design Workshops

Workshops: October 17, October 24, November 7, November 21

Register HERE

Taught by Dale Nugent, engineering innovation consultant and former Technology Marketing Manager and Venture Executive at UMN Technology Commercialization office. He has also mentored in two NSF I-Corps National Teams cohorts.


You've identified a specific innovation that you think you may want to commercialize. Now what?

Join this series of four bi-weekly, half-day, hands-on workshops applying the Value Proposition Canvas and Customer Discovery methods to specific projects. External industry executives, as well as experts from the Office for Technology Commercialization, the UMN Libraries, and the Carlson School of Management will be available to help.

You'll learn and apply the Lean LaunchPad customer development concepts promulgated by the NSF I-Corps program. Participation in this program can lead to qualification for the national I-Corps Teams program, which includes a $50,000 grant.

Value Proposition Design workshops are open to University of Minnesota faculty, staff and student researchers who want to learn about the processes and resources available in developing value propositions to bring an innovation to market.


These workshops build on the overview provided at the Technology Commercialization Bootcamp, now going into more depth and focusing on the participants? own projects.

Session 1: Product-Market Fit

Session 2: Customer Discovery

Session 3: Pathway to Commercialization

Session 4: Market Assessment

About MIN-Corps

With support from the National Science Foundation, MIN-Corps is a joint initiative of the College of Science and Engineering, the Office for Technology Commercialization, and the Carlson School of Management’s Gary S. Holmes Center for Entrepreneurship

Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019, 6:30 p.m. through Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019, 7:30 p.m.

Mayo Auditorium
420 Delaware Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Curiosity Drives Progress Lecture Series: Transforming Energy Systems to Address Climate Change

Energy is the lifeblood of modern societies. A successful global future energy system will provide energy security, economic security, and health and environmental security. Addressing the challenge of climate change offers an opportunity to make progress on those broad goals with energy technologies that are clean, deployable at large scale, and fully cost-competitive.

During this lecture, Lynn Orr—former Under Secretary for Science and Energy, Stanford University professor, and CSE alumnus—will examine options for meeting those challenges, outline the need for additional energy innovation, and explore research and development pathways that offer important opportunities for continued progress toward those goals. 

6 p.m. (doors open)
6:30-7:30 p.m. (lecture)


Lecture is free and open to the public. Seating is first-come, first-served the day of the event.

Friday, Nov. 22, 2019, 3:35 p.m.

John T. Tate Hall, Room 101

HSTM Colloquium: TBD

HSTM Colloquium for Fall 2019 are held in Tate 101 at 3:35pm. Refreshments served at 3:25pm.

November 22 Colloquium: TBD