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First fall quarter Science Cafe is Wednesday

Brian McCarthy will discuss the American Chestnut tree

Professor of Environmental and Plant Biology and hardwood forest ecologist Brian McCarthy will be the speaker at the first fall Science Café at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 14, in the Baker University Center Front Room. The first 50 attendees will receive free coffee.

During his talk titled "From the Brink of Extinction: the American Chestnut," McCarthy will explain this tree's saga as part of the history of Appalachia. He also will reveal what lies in store for this iconic American treasure.

According to the American Chestnut Foundation, the tree used to make up nearly 25 percent of the Appalachian forest region. By 1940, the chestnut blight brought this majestic tree close to extinction. Through the restoration work of the American Chestnut Foundation and the research of McCarthy, the American chestnut may have a chance at survival.

"After 30 years of breeding, the American Chestnut Foundation may have a blight resistant American chestnut," McCarthy said.

Science Cafés are a venue for students interested in the sciences and engineering to informally share their interests during a conversational exchange with faculty, staff and the community in a friendly setting.

Here is the fall quarter Science Café schedule:

Sept. 14:  Brian McCarthy, Environmental and Plant Biology, "From the Brink of Extinction: the American Chestnut"

Sept. 28:  Erin Murphy, Biomedical Sciences, "Bacteria:  The Good, the Bad and the Resistant"

Oct. 12:  Dave Bayless, Mechanical Engineering, TBD

Oct. 26:  James Lein, Geography, TBD