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Misher Festival of Fine Arts 2012

For over 25 years, Misher College of Arts and Sciences has provided students at USciences with the foundation of their education. The Misher Festival of Fine Arts & Humanities celebrates former University President Allen Misher’s vision of a USciences education that embraces history, music, and literature alongside biology, chemistry, and more.

In 2012, the Misher Festival celebrates Wanderlust—the longing and impulse to travel.  Throughout March and April, we’ll offer intellectual, physical, artistic, and personal adventures—let the Misher Festival inspire your own explorations!

2012 Schedule of Events

Digital Photo Contest: Wanderlust
Submissions accepted February 15 through March 15, 2012
All University students, faculty, staff, and alumni are invited to take part in the “Wanderlust” photo contest. Send a photo that best represents your love of travel and exploration. One submission per person. Photos will be featured on USciences TV throughout March and April. Send no more than ONE photograph in jpeg format, up to 10MB, to  *Cash prizes of $100, $75, and $50 will be awarded on Friday, March 23, 2012.


Monday, March 19

Left Behind: AIDS Orphans in Kenya
12:00 noon, Pharmacology/Toxicology Center (PTC), room 140
A disturbing and provocative journey through film. An American college student takes his camcorder into the slums of Nairobi to explore the lives of the chokoras—children orphaned by the AIDS epidemic (35 minutes). Introduced by Dr. Kevin Murphy, associate professor of history and co-sponsored by Anime Club and BSU.

Expeditions with National Geographic
4 p.m., Astra Zeneca Auditorium, McNeil Science and Technology Center
Molly Danner is program director at National Geographic Expeditions and a contributor to National Geographic’s Field NotesMs. Danner will discuss the exciting link between exploration, education and travel that is the hallmark of today’s National Geographic Society. Co-sponsored by the Honors Program and introduced by Roy Robson, PhD, professor of history.

Wanderlust—The Film!
6:45 p.m., Rave Movie Theater, 230 S. 40th Street, Philadelphia
Paul Rudd and Jennifer Aniston star in this raucous comedy about an overextended, stressed out Manhattan couple who leaves the big city and joins Elysium, an idyllic community populated by colorful characters who embrace a different way of looking at things. The only rule? Be yourself.  Rated R. Limited number of student tickets available. Contact


Tuesday, March 20

Crossroads: Travel, Education, and Service at USciences
Breakfast Panel Discussion
8:30 a.m., Wilson Hall, rooms 205-208

Travel’s impact is immeasurably powerful. How can we inspire and support others at USciences? Students, alumni, and faculty will share academic, professional, and personal adventures at a continental breakfast hosted by moderator (and world traveler) Dr. Robert Boughner, professor of classics.

Roy Robson, PhDA Journey on the Trans-Siberian Railroad
BYO Lunch Lecture
Noon, Wilson Hall, rooms 205-208
Last year, USciences Professor of History Dr. Roy Robson worked as the expert-in-residence on the National Geographic Expeditions tour of the Trans-Siberian Railroad. Today, Dr. Robson describes his Bejing-to-Moscow adventure. Dr. Robson is the author of Solovki: The Story of Russia Told Through Its Most Remarkable Islands (2004), which the New Yorker called “an epic drama of spiritualism and savagery.” Robson has studied Russian history for 25 years and has traveled extensively in Russia as a Fulbright scholar. His latest book, Think World Religions, was published in 2010.


Wednesday, March 21

bartram gardensBartram’s Gardens House and Garden Tour
Noon, 54th Street and Lindbergh Boulevard, Philadelphia

This 90-minute tour takes us through America’s oldest living botanical garden and the 18th century home of botanist, naturalist, and explorer John Bartram. This pastoral homestead—surrounded by the urban bustle of Philadelphia—features a wildflower meadow, majestic trees, river trail, and wetland overlooking the Schuylkyll River. Space limited; participants must pre-register Contact

Creating a Naturalist’s Blog
3 p.m., Athletic/Recreation Center (ARC), Classroom 100
Join us for an afternoon coffee break and informal discussion with Misher Visiting Professor Dr. Jack Connor, author of the “Stockton’s Natural World” blog. Dr. Connor has been described as a “fine naturalist writer who seems able to make a sunset linger while he and his readers strain to see the last silhouetted shape in the winter sky” (Publishers Weekly). Bring your laptop and start your own blog today!


Thursday, March 22

Morning at the Museum
8:30 a.m., Marvin Samson Center for the History of Pharmacy, Griffith Hall Lobby
Curator Michael Brody will briefly introduce "Botanicals to Braque: Five Centuries of the Illustrated Book," a historical survey of prints (primarily woodcuts, engravings, and lithographs) used in book illustration from about 1480 to 1950. Notable loans from USciences Rare Book Collection include illustrated herbals and other titles related to the practice and history of pharmacy. A highlight of the exhibition is Vegetal materia medica (first published in 1818) by renowned 19th-century botanist W. P. C. Barton, displayed alongside several of the book’s original copper engraving plates. Enjoy complementary coffee and explore.

Lunch with Misher Visiting Professor Jack Connor
Noon, Wilson Hall, rooms 209-212
Another opportunity to meet and chat with Dr. Jack Connor, author of Season at the Point: The Birds and Birders of Cape May, described as “Nature writing by a keen observer of nature, both human and otherwise” (Kirkus Reviews). Students, faculty, staff, and alumni are welcome. Co-sponsored by The Elixir

2012 Misher Visiting Professor Lecture

Losing The Way & Finding Prosperity: Vagrancy, Chance, & Selection in Avian and Human Migrations
5 p.m., Astra Zeneca Auditorium, McNeil STC
Almost all animals must leave their parental homes if they are to prosper, and birds make the grandest show of it—in many cases traveling thousands of miles from their natal nests. The pageant of migration contains more nuances and accidents than we generally recognize, however. Dr. Jack Connor (author of The Complete Birder and Season at the Point: The Birds and Birders of Cape May) will discuss vagrancy, errors, chance, and selection in both avian and human populations: Why is vagrancy so common in birds and other flying animals? How and why can the “lost” sometimes prosper? And what parallels can we find in humanity’s expansion around the globe? Reception to follow.


Friday, March 23

IMAX Film: Coral Reef Adventure
11:15 a.m., Tuttleman IMAX Theater, The Franklin Institute, 220 N. 20th Street, Philadelphia
Since snorkeling the Schuylkill River leaves much to be desired, we instead offer an outing to Coral Reef Adventure, an IMAX film which follows the exploits of the husband and wife underwater filmmaking duo Howard and Michelle Hall. Beginning at the Great Barrier Reef off the Australian coast, the Halls explore the vast underwater ecosystem and the scores of wildlife that thrive off of it. Limited number of student tickets available. Contact

Misher Festival Digital Photo Contest Winners Announced
Noon, PTC 140
Winners of the “Wanderlust” Digital Photo contest announced—come see photos captured by USciences students, faculty, staff, and alumni that best represent a love of travel and exploration.


Saturday, March 24

Gettysburg Battlefield Bus Tour
8 a.m to 6 p.m.
Tour guides Dr. David Traxel, professor of history, and Dr. Kevin Murphy, associate professor of history, lead our journey through highlights of the Battle of Gettysburg. We’ll visit Devil’s Den, Cemetery Ridge, Little Roundtop, and more; we’ll also visit the Cyclorama at the Gettysburg Visitor’s Center. $5 students, $15 faculty/staff/alumni (Cost includes transportation, Cyclorama admission, and lunch.) Advance reservations required; limited space available. Contact


Thursday, March 29

The Outgoing Tide
8 p.m., Suzanne Roberts Theatre/Philadelphia Theatre Company, Broad & Lombard Streets, Philadelphia
In a summer cottage on Chesapeake Bay, Gunner has hatched an unorthodox plan to secure his family’s future but meets with resistance from his wife and son, who have plans of their own. As winter approaches, the three must quickly find common ground and come to an understanding before the tide goes out. This new drama by Barrymore Award winner and 2010 Misher Professor Bruce Graham hums with dark humor and profound emotion.  A limited number of tickets are available. Contact


Friday, March 30

Student Vocal Concert: Theresa Rose Woodward
6:30 p.m., Wilson Hall, room 215 (music room)
How far can our artistic journeys take us? PharmD student and Kingsessing Singer Theresa Rose Woodward presents an evening vocal performance that charts her path as an aspiring vocalist. Reception to follow.


Thursday, April 5

Riolama LorenzoThe Honors Colloquium presents Riolama Lorenzo
4:30 p.m., Griffith Hall A
Perhaps USciences alumna Riolama Lorenzo’s earliest journey was from Havana, Cuba, to Miami; however, her most prestigious journey is in the realm of professional ballet. In 1993, Ms. Lorenzo received the Princess Grace Award and trained at New York City Ballet's acclaimed School of American Ballet. The following autumn she became an Apprentice with New York City Ballet and was then invited to join the company. Now, Ms. Lorenzo retires at the height of her career as a principal with the Pennsylvania Ballet. Talk about a journey. Join our conversation with one of the most accomplished ballerinas in the world.


Friday, April 13

The Elixir’s 2012 Publication Party
4:30 p.m., ARC, classroom 100
For over 40 years, The Elixir has celebrated the writing of the University’s students, staff, faculty, and alumni. Join us for a delectable reception as we celebrate the publication of our 2012 issue and announce the winners of the Friends of USP writing contests.

Kingsessing Players Concert
7:30 p.m., McNeil STC Atrium
Among tonight’s selections: Mozart’s “Turkish March” (which reflects a fascination with exotic and faraway things) and “Flight of the Bumblebee.” This concert features performances by the Wind, Brass, and Jazz Ensembles.


Saturday, April 14

Wildlife Hike: John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge
Meet at 11 a.m., McNeil STC, room 137
Wanderlust originates from the German wandern (to hike) and lust (desire). Join the Microbiology Club as they lead us on a hike at the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge (84th and Lindbergh), a journey not so far from the USciences campus. Free; advance reservations recommended. Contact Jason Porter:


Friday, April 27

Kingsessing Singers and Players Concert
7:30 p.m., McNeil STC Atrium
At University of the Sciences, it’s not the close of a semester without the inspirational concerts of the Kingsessing Singers and Players. Tonight, the Chorus, Chamber Choir, and String Ensemble explore the question: what happens in our final journey, at the end of our earthly life?


Christine Flanagan 


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