Mansfield Center Brown Bag Lecture Series

Every semester, the Mansfield Center Brown Bag Lecture series draws on members of the University and Missoula communities and on visiting foreign scholars and fellows to create a series of talks on a wide variety of topics, from international development, to exchange opportunities, to public policy and ethical dilemmas. All lectures are free and open to the public and run from 12:10 pm to 1:00 pm.

Spring 2016

Environmental Conservation Projects in Vietnam

Sarah Bates stands before a large statue in Vietnam with several Buddhist monks

Tuesday, February 16, University Center Room 332
with Marilyn Marler, Natural Areas Specialist, UM Division of Biological Sciences
and Sarah Bates, Deputy Director, Northern Rockies, Prairies and Pacific Region of the National Wildlife Federation

Two participants in the U.S. Department of State Professional Fellows Program administered by the Mansfield Center will describe their recent visits to Vietnam and ongoing partnerships with Vietnam-based wildlife conservation projects.

Marilyn Marler is a botanist at the University of Montana where she is responsible for stewardship of Mt Sentinel and other natural areas. She also serves on the Missoula City Council. Marilyn has been involved in the YSEALI program for several years as a homestay host, professional host and occasional guest speaker about the role of local governments in the U.S. This was her second YSEALI trip to Vietnam.

Sarah Bates is the Deputy Director of the Northern Rockies, Prairies and Pacific Region of the National Wildlife Federation in Missoula. Prior to joining NWF, Sarah worked with the Center for Natural Resources and Environmental Policy at the University of Montana, where she focused on western water and public resource law and policy. Sarah was the professional host for Lamngeun (Aor) Manivong of the Rural Development Agency in Laos and Thai Van Nguyen of Save Vietnam’s Wildlife.

How Language and Culture Shape Each Other

A drawing of four people in four different clothing styles all speaking in differeing languages

Wednesday, February 24, University Center Room 330
with Dr. Reza Samar, Associate Professor, UM Maureen and Mike Mansfield Center

This presentation will explore the mutual relationship between language and culture, the influence of language on shaping culture, and the effects of culture on changing language. Dr. Reza will also examine ways of teaching second languages for intercultural communication while maintaining one's first language and cultural identity.

The Confluence of Renewable Energy and Human Health: Putting Ourselves to Work for a Human-Powered Future

A graph showing that the biosphere and the technosphere overlap.

Tuesday, March 8 in University Center room 332

with Dr. Bradley Layton, Director, Energy Technology Program, Missoula College

Associate Professor Dr. Bradley Layton will discuss several examples of how our energy consumption habits are at odds with human health concerns. This discussion will be followed by a set of solutions for the 21st Century for moving away from fossil fuels, eliminating our reliance on landfills, and improving air quality on both local and global scales.

Exploring Climate Change and Culture in the Mekong Delta

Students ride in a boat on a river in Vietnam

Wednesday, March 23, Mansfield Center Conference Room
with Dr. Nicky Phear, Program Coordinator, UM Climate Change Studies Program, and Dr. Dan Spencer, Associate Professor, UM Environmental Studies Program

Dr. Dan Spencer recently spent three weeks in the Mekong Delta of Vietnam with seventeen University of Montana students. He will share the insights they gained into how climate change is impacting the region and how people are adapting to climate change in Vietnam. Information about the 2016-2017 Wintersession in Vietnam program will also be available.

Sports Diplomacy: Engaging Youth Across Nations

SportsUnited Logo

Wednesday, April 27, University Center Room 330
with American delegates from the 2016 SportsUnited Professional Exchange Program in Laos

A special offering of the U.S. Department of State’s SportsUnited Initiative to Laos.

American participants from the 2016 SportsUnited Initiative to Laos will share reflections on their visits to Vientiane and Xieng Khouang, Laos, focused on the value of sports diplomacy for empowering youth and promoting cross-cultural understanding.

Past Brown Bag Lecture Series