Outreach & Community Engagement Programs

Faculty Speakers Bureau

Reed College facilitates a Speakers Bureau of faculty and staff who are available to address topics of interest and expertise to Portland area high school classes and clubs. We will also consider requests from local libraries, museums, and other entities that serve our community. Interested parties should contact Laura Zientek, Associate Dean of Graduate and Special Programs (503-777-7259; special-programs@reed.edu), to submit requests for a faculty speaker. She will take your information, contact the professor or staff expert about availability, and then put you in touch to arrange the details.

While we will accommodate as many requests as possible, schedule conflicts and demands upon faculty and staff experts' time make it difficult to complete all requests. Each member of the Bureau generally is available for no more than two presentations during the academic year, and will make one presentation at the designated school or organization (occasionally high school teachers combine multiple classes in the same subject for the presentation). Fall break, January, Spring break, and late May are times when Reed faculty often have the most flexibility to leave campus during high school hours. View Reed's academic calendar.

Request a speaker

You can facilitate the request process by providing the following information when making initial contact with the special programs office:

1) Your name and your role at your institution or organization
2) Name of your institution or organization
3) Phone number and best time to reach you
4) Reed faculty member or staff experts requested
5) Topic to be addressed
6) Class/group to be addressed
7) Year of students or age of participants and size of class/group
8) Date and time frame for Bureau member to address the class/group
9) Preference for remote or in-person visit


Brada portrait

 Professor Betsey Brada

  • What is anthropology? General presentation on topics such as what cultural anthropologists study and how they study it, careers in anthropology, or topic of teacher preference
  • So You Want to Save the World? Anthropological Perspectives on Global Health, Humanitarianism, and International Development
  • The Future is African: Rethinking Africa in the American Imagination


Reed Library picture

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. The Cooley Gallery is housed in Reed College's Hauser Library, pictured above in a photo by Leah Nash.


Derek Applewhite portrait

Professor Derek Applewhite

  • Cell Biology and Microscopy
  • Experiences as a person from a historically excluded group in science
  • Discussion about the ongoing research in my lab (how cells migrate, change shape)

Professor Kara Cerveny

  • Cellular and developmental biology
  • Genetics (as it relates to embryonic development)
  • Career options as a biologist (prior experience as a high school science teacher, researcher in the UK and Germany, and writer/editor for Cell, a scientific journal)
  • Discussion of on-going work in my lab (genetic and cellular investigation of eye and brain growth and development in zebrafish, possibly including its relevance to health and human disease).


Campillo-Alvarado picture

 Professor Gonzalo Campillo-Alvarado

Note: the topics can be covered and led in either English or Spanish for dual-language schools or bilingual students.
  • Crystals, Chemistry and Us
    • We live in a world of crystals, but do we know the science behind them? Learn some of the fascinating molecular aspects and properties of these objects.
  • Luminescence and the Oregon Coast: Shining Light on Molecules
    • Some objects and animals glow in the dark, and they look gorgeous on photos (#nofilter). But did you know the science behind molecular luminescence is even more fascinating? See the blurb of a recent talk here.
  • Chemistry for dual-language schools and bilingual students
    • Chemistry should be accessible to all members of our society. In Oregon, Spanish is the second most predominant language, and sometimes the only language spoken at home. I would be happy to lead a discussion in Spanish about any topic in chemistry. See examples here.
  • Discussion about the ongoing research in my lab and opportunities to get involved
    • My areas of research include: reactions in solids, molecular machines, crystallography, organic chemistry, mechanochemistry (including mortar-and-pestle).

Greek, Latin, and Ancient Mediterranean Studies

Nigel Nicholson Portrait

Professor Nigel Nicholson

  • Greek Tragedy
  • Ancient Greek Athletics / The Ancient Olympics
  • Greek and Roman Sports
  • Greek and Roman Literature
Tom Landvatter picture

 Professor Tom Landvatter

  • Archaeology and archaeological fieldwork
  • Greek, Roman, and Egyptian art and archaeology
  • Archaeology of death and burial
  • Pseudo-archaeology and pseudo-history


Professor Natarajan portrait

 Professor Radhika Natarajan

  • The British Empire, including:
    • The history of settler colonialism and indigeneity in Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Africa
    • Transatlantic slavery, its abolition and afterlives
    • The Raj
    • Museums and Exhibitions, particularly human displays, history of collecting artifacts, and calls for repatriation of objects
    • Migration, especially transnational labor migrations and migration to Europe from former colonies
    • Pan Africanism
    • The World Wars
    • Development
    • Decolonization
    • Imperial commemoration, nostalgic cultural production, and statue debates
    • Legacies of empire, ex. the Windrush Scandal, Brexit
Red griffin logo

 Professor Margot Minardi

  • American activism against slavery
  • American social reform movements, 1776-1861 (including temperance, women's rights, abolitionism, etc.)
  • Social history of the American Revolution
  • History of education (including public schooling) in 18th- and 19th-century U.S.

Mathematics and Statistics

Kyle Ormsby Portrait

 Professor Kyle Ormsby

  • Counting on symmetry – How do mathematicians make sense of symmetry, and what do they do with it? (Answers: groups, everything)
  • Regular polytopes in 2, 3, 4, and more dimensions – Classifying shapes and making sense of the sequence ∞, 5, 6, 3, 3, 3, 3, ….
  • How many holes does a straw have? – topology, Euler characteristic, and the power of definitions


Meg Scharle picture

 Professor Meg Scharle

  • What is philosophy?
  • Ancient Greek philosophy, including special topics, such as Ancient Greek conceptions of soul, friendship, happiness, mortality, or theology
  • Ancient natural science (physics, chemistry, biology, meteorology)

Political Science


 Professor Mariela Daby

  • Latin American politics
  • Human rights in Latin America
  • Women and politics in Latin America
  • Corruption in developing countries


Johnny Powell Portrait

 Johnny W. Powell, Professor of Physics Emeritus

  • Galactic astrophysics and cosmology
  • Maxwell’s equations of electromagnetism
  • Experimental physics or computational physics

Admission and Financial Aid

Sandy Sundstrom Portrait

 Sandy Sundstrom,

 Director of Financial Aid

Milyon Trulove Portrait

 Milyon Trulove,

 Vice President and Dean of Admission and   Financial Aid

If you and your students would like to learn more about choosing, applying to, and paying for a selective college, Sandy Sundstrom, Reed College's Director of Financial Aid, and Milyon Trulove, Vice President and Dean of Admission and Financial Aid, offer a presentation to demystify financial aid and the college admission process. They also discuss application questions such as:

  • What are colleges looking for?
  • How should I present myself?
  • How do I write a strong essay?