Guest speakers share valuable lessons with Governor’s Scholars
July 15, 2010 By Leigh Ivey
speak to the 2010 Governor’s Scholars on Centre’s campus. Sharp
delivered a lecture on biotechnology, explaining that he hoped to
educate the students on “how to move forward with science and
Most of the GSP lectures are held in Centre’s Weisiger Theatre.
The students taking part in the Governor’s Scholars Program on Centre College’s campus have been enjoying the GSP life for nearly three weeks. As they reach the halfway point of this summer’s program, the scholars are staying busy in classes, on field trips and during their free time.
They are also attending lectures by well-known public figures from Kentucky. This year’s guest speakers include Rodger Bingham, a competitor on the second season of Survivor; Tori Murden McClure, the first woman to make a solo crossing of the Atlantic Ocean by rowboat; Phillip Sharp, winner of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1993; Ben Sollee, cellist and vocalist; and Trey Grayson, Kentucky Secretary of State.
“We try to invite speakers who are both accomplished and from Kentucky,” Amber Lyvers ’10, office manager of the Centre GSP office, says. “We want to expose the scholars to a variety of issues concerning the state addressed by people who are also from here.”
Because guest speakers “provide insight into topics and experiences that many people might not have,” Lyvers says, their time spent with the GSP students is invaluable. “The lectures allow scholars to broaden their knowledge of things in the ‘real world.’ Also, since most—if not all—of the speakers are from Kentucky, they can help provide a guiding light for these scholars. The lectures highlight very successful people who have come from the same state as the students, and their success stories are in varying fields: music, science, politics and more.”
GSP scholar Katie Miller says that “the wide range of speakers has been amazing. Their stories are all inspiring in different ways; from common 'Kentucky Joe' persevering in Australia on Survivor to a doctor working on ways to end world hunger and our dependence on fossil fuels. I'm impressed with the opportunities GSP has provided. How many people my age have had the chance to discuss the future of cancer treatment with a Nobel Prize winner? The experience has been unbelievable.”
The speakers not only share their knowledge about these topics but also let the students know that they themselves often did not know what path their lives should take when they were in high school.
Sharp, who spoke to the scholars about “Discoveries, Biotechnology, Cancer and New Biology” on Monday, July 12, told the students that when he was in high school at Pendleton County High School, he did not know at all what he wanted to do with his life but says knew he “didn’t want to farm and that I needed to go to college.” He explained how he worked to put himself through Union College in eastern Kentucky and then earned his Ph.D. at the University of Illinois. Sharp currently serves as biology professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
To read more about what the GSP students at Centre are experiencing this summer, click here.