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The migration of monarch butterflies is an endangered environmental process. The migrating monarch will not exist in ten years if current trends continue, according to some monarch researchers.

Wanda DeWaard, environmental educator at Earth Kin, will discuss how citizen science and other activities can help save the save the monarch at this week’s Science Forum. Her talk, “The Mystery and Magic of Monarch Butterflies,” will be held at noon in Room C-D of Thompson-Boling Arena on Friday, September 25.

The Science Forum is a weekly brown-bag lunch series that allows professors and area scientists to discuss their research with the general public in a conversational presentation.

Free and open to the public, each Science Forum consists of a forty-minute presentation followed by a Q-and-A session. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own lunch or purchase it at the café in Thompson-Boling Arena. The Science Forum, sponsored by the UT Office of Research and Quest magazine, is an initiative to raise awareness of the research, scholarship, and creative activity happening on campus.

DeWaard earned her bachelor’s degree in recreational education at the State University School of New York at Cortland and her master’s degree in environmental education at Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania. She began working as an outdoor educator at Earth Kin Outdoors Program in 1989. Earth Kin encourages self- and earth awareness, celebration, kinship, and hope.

The weekly Science Forum continues throughout the semester:

October 2 – Shannon Mahurin, staff scientist for Nanomaterials Chemistry Group at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, “Desalination: The Quest for Clean Water”

October 9 – Colin Sumrall, assistant professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, “The Origins of Birds: Did the Age of Dinosaurs Really End?”

October 23 – John Schwartz, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering, “Restoring Urban Streams: What is ‘Natural?'”

October 30 – David Matthews, professor of architecture and design, chair of interior design, “Design Thinking and Creative Process: How Designers Approach Wicked Problems and Engage the Future”

November 6 – Matthew Mench, Condra Chair of Excellence Professor and head of the Department of Mechanical, Aerospace, and Biomedical Engineering, “Where Do We Put All the Renewable Energy?”

November 13 – Melissa R. Allen, postdoctoral researcher at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, “Climate Variability and Change: What Fundamental Science and Modeling Tell Us”

November 20 – Natalie Mong, education director for Upstate Birds of Prey, “The Fascinating Biology of Birds of Prey”


Amy Blakely (865-974-5034,