Outreach Programs

Faculty Speakers Bureau

Reed College facilitates a Speakers Bureau of faculty members who are available to address topics of interest and expertise to Portland area high school classes and clubs. High School teachers should contact Barbara Amen, director of special programs (503-777-7259), to submit requests for a faculty speaker. The director will take the teacher's information, contact the faculty member about availability, and then notify the teacher accordingly. While we will accommodate as many requests as possible, schedule conflicts and demands upon a faculty member's time make it difficult to complete all requests. Each faculty member generally is available for no more than two presentations during the academic year, and will make one presentation at the designated schools (occasionally high school teachers combine multiple classes in the same subject for the presentation). Fall break (October 20-24), January, and late May are times when Reed faculty often have the most flexibility to leave campus during high school hours.

High School teachers interested in inviting a Reed faculty member come to their class or after school club can facilitate the request process by providing the following information when making initial contact with the special programs office:

            1)  Name of teacher requesting a speaker
            2)  High School
            3)  Phone number and best time to reach teacher (including home
                  number, if appropriate)
            4)  Reed faculty member requested
            5)  Topic to be addressed
            6)  Class/group to be addressed
            7)  Year of students and size of class/group
            8)  Date and time frame for faculty member to address the class
                  (flexibility works best!)

2014-2015 list of available faculty members by department.  It also may be possible to accommodate requests for additional Reed faculty members, or requests for topics other than those listed.


The Open Gallery program is a visual arts outreach program. It coordinates presentations on the current exhibitions on-site at the Cooley Gallery or at the schools.

September 2 -  October 19
Wynne Greenwood's Stacy

Wynne Greenwood transforms the Cooley Gallery into a studio and performance space in order to re-engage her groundbreaking art band Tracy + the Plastics in relationship to her most recent experimental video, installation, and object-based work. Over the past year Greenwood has re-created each of Tracy’s performances—completing this archival rebirth while in residence at the Cooley. Stacy nurtures Tracy + the Plastics into contact and conversation with its own future, creating a queering space of intimacy, humor, and hope.


Professor Kara Cerveny

1)  Cellular and developmental biology
2)  Genetics (as it relates to embryonic development)
3)  Career options as a biologist (prior experience as a high school science teacher, reasearcher in the UK and Germany, and writer/editor for Cell, a scientific journal)
4)  Discussion of her lab (genetic and cellular investigation of eye growth and development in zebrafish) and its relevance to health and human disease.

Professor David Dalton

1)  Pacific NW Forests
2)  Biological Legacy of Lewis and Clark
3)  Genetic engineering of plants

Professor Todd Schlenke

1)  Host-parasite interactions:  how immune systems work and how parasites try to evade or suppress immune systems
2)  Natural history: understanding and appreciating the natural world around us
3)  How I got interested in science, and what it means to be a scientist


Professor Walter Englert

1)  Greek Tragedy          
2)  Homer (Iliad and Odyssey)   
3)  Greek and Roman literature and philosophy

Professor Ellen Millender

1)  Greek and Roman history
2)  Ancient Sparta
3)  Women in the Ancient World
4)  The benefits of a liberal arts college; Classics as a college major


Professor Denise Hare

1)  China's economic policy and development: what it means for China and for the rest of the world


Professor Margot Minardi   

1)  19th-century American social reform movements
2)  Doing history with images
3)  Social history of the American Revolution


Professor Matt Pearson     (limited availability)

1)  "What is Linguistics?" General presentation on topics such as speakers' unconscious knowledge of their language and how linguists investigate it, careers in linguistics, or topic of teacher preference.

Literature/Literary Studies

Professor Jan Mieszkowski   

1)  Why are literary studies important?
2)  What is the broader historical, social, and political signifance of literature and literary studies?
3)  Why does poetry matter?


Professor Adam Groce    

1)  The math of voting: a proof that fair elections are impossible
(This topic covers Arrow's Theorem, which won its author a Nobel Prize in economics.  It's a formal proof that you can't create an election system that isn't "unfair" in one of a few basic, specified ways.)
2)  Mathematical matchmaking: the stable marriage problem
(This is a description of algorithms that pair objects up, motivated by the idea of putting together romantic partners in pairs of mutually attracted people.)

Given the challenging material, we suggest honors and advanced classes for the above topics)

Nuclear Science

Melinda Krahenbuhl, director of the Reed Research Reactor

1)  Basic Radiation Science
2)  Radiation Health Effects
3)  Nuclear Ractor Accident Analysis


Professor Daniel Borrero

1)  Spontaneous pattern formation, self-organization, and complexity in nature
2)  Nonlinear dynamics and chaos
3)  Computation in physics and engineering

Professor Alison Crocker

1)  Exoplanets
2)  Star formation
3)  Galaxy populations

Professor David Griffiths

1)  Special relativity
2)  Elementary particles
3)  Quantum mechanics

Professor Brooks Thomas

1)  Dark Matter
2)  Hunting for new particles and forces of nature at particle colliders
3)  The Higgs Boson:  why it matters and how we found it


Professor Enriqueta Canseco-Gonzalez
(limited availability with strong preference for January)

1)  Language acquisition
2)  Language and the brain: evidence from brain-damaged patients
3)  Sign language and bilingualism

Professor Kathy Oleson

1)  Social psychology
2)  Stereotyping and prejudice
3)  The self
4)  Interpersonal perception and relationships

Russian Literature

Professor Lena Lencek

1)  Russia and Italy: a romance
2)  The Soviet Experience


Office of Special Programs