Former astronaut and pro football player Leland Melvin will give the keynote address when Ball State University hosts the online annual research conference of the Indiana STEM Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (IN LSAMP) on October 3.
During the conference, undergraduate students will engage with each other through interactive sessions about preparing for a STEM career. STEM professionals and administrators will hear firsthand insights from panelists as they share their experiences working in the field.
"Fly High With STEM," is from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Melvin will give the keynote address at 11 a.m.
Melvin is the only person to fly in space after having played in the NFL. He served as a mission specialist on two flights in Space Shuttle Atlantis. The Pro Football Hall of Fame honored his athletic and scientific accomplishments by placing his Detroit Lions jersey under glass in Canton, Ohio. Through these professional experiences working on high-stakes teams, Melvin developed a deep understanding of team dynamics.
Ball State President Geoffrey S. Mearns will give the opening address. Ball State Provost Susana Rivera-Mills will provide the closing remarks.
Ball State panelists include:
- Dayna Thompson, director of the Charles W. Brown Planetarium, who will lead a plenary session: Your Journey Through Space & Time.
- Dillon Waggoner, an assistant director at the Ball State Career Center, who will be on the panel: STEM Career Planning.
- Marsha McGriff, associate vice president for inclusive excellence, and Susan McDowell, vice president for research, who will be part of a panel discussion on Facilitating Retention and Success of Minority Students. Melinda Messineo, interim chair of the Department of Psychological Science, will moderate the session.
- Cristina Preston-Herrera, a graduate assistant in the Department of Chemistry, will serve on the IN LSAMP Alumni Panel: How to be a STEM Star!
IN LSAMP brings together the state’s top research universities to increase the participation and advancement of underrepresented students in STEM disciplines. Members are Ball State, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, Indiana University Bloomington, Indiana University Northwest, Indiana University South Bend, and Ivy Tech Community College Indianapolis.
Learn more about the conference.