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Inspiring Students the Aim as Nobel Laureates Come to UT Austin for Virtual Celebration

Inspiring Students the Aim as Nobel Laureates Come to UT Austin for Virtual Celebration

This week, students at The University of Texas at Austin will be able to talk with and learn from three Nobel Laureates, who are among the world's top scientists, in a free virtual event April 21-22.

The Nobel Prize Inspiration Initiative is a global program that seeks to bring Nobel Prize winners in closer contact with the larger scientific community, particularly younger scientists. Students from neighboring universities and from public schools are also invited. This is the first time the event has been held at UT Austin. Since the initiative's inception in 2010, events have been held at 30 universities on four continents.

"Here at UT, we're all about creating opportunities to learn from the world's greatest minds," said UT Austin President Jay Hartzell. "Getting to interact with Nobel Laureates has the potential to be pivotal and transformative for our students as they work out their own world-changing paths."

The Nobel Laureates attending the event are Elizabeth Blackburn, 2009 Nobel Laureate in Physiology or Medicine, Andrew Fire, 2006 Nobel Laureate in Physiology or Medicine, and Robert Grubbs, 2005 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry. UT Austin has two Nobel Laureates, mechanical engineer John Goodenough and physicist Steven Weinberg. Weinberg will participate in one event with the other Laureates about the value of science in society.

The featured visiting Nobel Laureates will participate in two days of discussions and answer questions from students, and select UT student researchers will have an opportunity to present their research projects to the Nobel Laureates. Sessions during the two-day event include conversations about the lives and work of the three scientists and how digital tools are changing science.

Elizabeth Blackburn received the 2009 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine "for the discovery of how chromosomes are protected by telomeres and the enzyme telomerase."

Andrew Fire received the 2006 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine "for the discovery of RNA interference – gene silencing by double-stranded RNA."

Robert Grubbs received the 2005 Nobel Prize in Chemistry "for the development of the metathesis method in organic synthesis."

The event is held in partnership and with support from 3M.

"The challenges of tomorrow will be solved by the students of today," said Denise Rutherford, 3M's senior vice president and chief corporate affairs officer. "3M believes science will create a more healthy, sustainable and equitable world, and we want to inspire others to apply science to improve lives around the world."

"We are delighted to have come together with 3M and UT Austin to deliver this digital event in challenging times," said Laura Sprechmann, CEO of Nobel Prize Outreach. "The Nobel Prize Inspiration Initiative strives to bring Nobel Laureates into close contact with the scientists of tomorrow, and we believe that connecting people is crucial – or almost existential – at this difficult moment."

Learn more about the event and register for free.

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Saturday, 18 September 2021

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