Tate Lecture Series Student Forum

Calendar Highlights: May 6, 2013

Summer is nearly here — the end of Spring 2013 (and another semester) at a glance:


  • May 6: Last day of instruction
  • May 7: Reading Day
  • May 8-14: Examinations (no exams scheduled for Sunday)
  • May 16-31: May Term 2013 for SMU Campus and SMU-in-Taos
  • May 17-18: May Commencement Weekend
  • May 27: University Holiday, Memorial Day
  • June 6: Last day to file for August Graduation

Friends of SMU Libraries: The Friends of SMU Libraries is holding their annual dinner and meeting at 6 p.m. Monday, May 6 at Seasons 52, located at Northpark Center. Featured speaker Hugh Aynesworth is a journalist, author and historian and will be presenting his most recent work, Witness to History, a personal retrospective on the JFK assassination 50 years after the event. This event is $45 per person and registration is required.

Beta Test: Visit SMU Guildhall graduate students in the Hughes-Trigg Commons on Tuesday, May 7, to playtest the unique video games they created. Stop in anytime from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

End of 2013 Tate Lecture Season: The final Tate Lecture of the 2012-2013 season is Tuesday, May 7, 2013. The season will close with Álvaro Uribe. As always the Student Forum is at 4:30 p.m. in Hughes-Trigg and the lecture is at 8 p.m. in McFarlin Auditorium.

Calendar Highlights: Nov. 13, 2012

Tate Lecture: The third Tate lecture of the semester will feature Jane McGonigal, Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012. McGonigal is the author of Reality is Broken and is known as a visionary in the gaming world. Her lecture will focus on the idea of applying the gamer spirit to the problems that we face in the 21st century. The student forum is at 4:30 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Ballroom and the lecture is at 8 p.m. in McFarlin Auditorium.

MJO: The Meadows School of the Arts invites you to hear the Meadows Jazz Orchestra in a free concert Tuesday, Nov. 13. The ensemble will perform works focused on the traditions of large ensemble jazz as well as new works by Director Akira Sato and Meadows faculty and students. Sato is a trumpet player, arranger and composer and has directed the Meadows Jazz Orchestra at SMU since 2011. The performance begins at 8 p.m. in the Bob Hope Theatre, Owen Arts Center.

Take a stand: The SMU Debate program presents a public debate on energy, Wednesday, Nov. 14. This event is free and open to the public for observation as well as participation. The debate starts at 6 p.m. in the O’Donnell Hall, Owen Arts Center (Room 2130).

Mexico’s melting pot: Clements Fellow Ruben Flores will speak on the aftermath of the Mexican Revolution and Mexico’s efforts to create a unified nation in the Clements Center Brown Bag Lecture Series Wednesday, Nov. 14. Flores is at SMU completing his manuscript The Beloved Communities: Mexico’s Melting Pot and the Making of American Civil Rights. The lecture starts at noon in the Texana Room of the Degolyer Library. Don’t forget your lunch!

Levine Lecture: Shalem Center founder Yoram Hazony visits SMU for a Levine Lecture in Jewish Studies Thursday, Nov. 15. Hazony, president of the Center’s Institute for Advanced Studies, will focus his lecture on whether the Bible can be read as a work of philosophy in narrative form. After the lecture Dr. Hazony’s most recent book will be available for purchase and signing. The lecture begins at 7:30 p.m. in McCord Auditorium, 306 Dallas Hall. Please contact Rabbi Heidi Cortez  for more information.

Image c/o Steve Hofstetter

Looking for a laugh: The Program Council invites you to a night of stand-up comedy: Steve Hofstetter, know as the man of “comedy without apology,” is coming to SMU Thursday, Nov. 15. Hofstetter has appeared on numerous national TV shows, has written three books and released three albums. He is a columnist with College Humor and visits over 100 colleges every year. The stand-up starts at 8 p.m. in the Hughes Trigg Theater.

In C: SYZYGY and DJ Dennis DeSantis invite SMU to a collaborative remix performance of Terry Riley’s In C. On Friday, Nov. 16, the sounds of pianos, percussion, strings, winds and singers will be heard with DJ DeSantis and Meadows ensemble director Mat Albert. This unique performance begins at 8 p.m. in the Bob Hope Theatre, Owen Arts Center, and is $7 for faculty, staff and students

New Tate Lecture season begins Sept. 11, 2012

William J. Bennett, Chris Matthews, and David GergenFormer U.S. Secretary of Education William Bennett will meet journalist and commentator Chris Matthews at SMU to offer insights and opinions on current events, including the 2012 elections. They kick off the Willis M. Tate Distinguished Lecture Series’ 2012-13 season at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 11 in McFarlin Auditorium.

Their discussion will be moderated by news analyst, former White House adviser and longtime Tate Series favorite David Gergen.

Bennett is the Washington Fellow of the Claremont Institute, where he is also the chairman of Americans for Victory over Terrorism, a project dedicated to sustaining and strengthening public opinion in the war on terrorism. He headed the U.S. Department of Education during the Reagan administration. He later served the nation’s first Drug Czar as part of the George H.W. Bush. The author of numerous books, including the perennial best-seller The Book of Virtues (1993), Bennett is also the host of the nationally syndicated radio show Morning in America. In addition, he is the founder and first chairman of the online education company K-12.

> Follow Bennett on Twitter @WilliamJBennett

Matthews is host of MSNBC’s “Hardball with Chris Matthews” and NBC’s “The Chris Matthews Show.” As a journalist, he has covered the fall of the Berlin Wall, the first all-races election in South Africa, the Good Friday Peace Accord in Northern Ireland, the funeral of Pope John Paul II, and every U.S. presidential election campaign since the 1980s. His 14 years as a newspaper journalist included time as Washington bureau chief for The San Francisco Examiner and as a national columnist for The San Francisco Chronicle. Previously, he had a 15-year career in public service in the U.S. Senate, in the White House during the Carter Administration, and as the top aide to Speaker of the House Tip O’Neill. He is the author of 7 best-selling books, including his most recent, Jack Kennedy: Elusive Hero (2011).

Keep up with Matthews on Twitter @Hardball_Chris

David Gergen is a senior political analyst for CNN and the director of the Center for Public Leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School, where he is also a professor of public service. Gergen joined the Nixon White House in 1971 as a staff assistant to a speech writing team that included Pat Buchanan, Ben Stein and Bill Safire. He worked in the administration of Gerald Ford and as an adviser to the 1980 George H.W. Bush presidential campaign. He served as director of communications for Ronald Reagan and as adviser to Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Warren Christopher on domestic and foreign affairs. In 2000, he published the best-selling book, Eyewitness to Power: The Essence of Leadership, Nixon to Clinton.

Check out Gergen on Twitter @David_Gergen

The lecture is sold out. All SMU community members are invited to attend the Tate Lecture Series Student Forum with the speakers at 4:30 p.m. on lecture day in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom. Doors open at 4 p.m. Seats may be reserved online, and reserved seats are guaranteed until 4:15 p.m.

To ask the speakers a question via Twitter, send a tweet with the hashtag #SMUTateGergen. A moderator will ask some of these questions during the event.

Learn more about this season’s Tate lecturers and the Tate Student Forum series for the community at smu.edu/tateseries.

Katie Couric to deliver 2011-12 Tate Lecture Nov. 29

Katie CouricJournalist, cancer advocate and best-selling author Katie Couric comes to SMU Tuesday, Nov. 29, to deliver the Tolleson Lecture in the University’s 2011-12 Willis M. Tate Distinguished Lecture Series. The event begins at 8 p.m. in McFarlin Auditorium.

A fixture in national television news for more than 20 years, Couric enjoyed an unprecedented 15-year run as co-anchor of NBC News’ Today (1991-2006) and was the first solo female anchor of a national nightly news broadcast, as anchor and managing editor of the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric (2006-2011). At CBS News, Couric was also a contributor to 60 Minutes, CBS Sunday Morning and CBS News primetime specials.

Couric has covered important international news stories including the bombing in Oklahoma City, the Clarence Thomas hearings, the terrorist attacks of September 11, the shooting at Columbine High School, the earthquake in Haiti, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the shooting in Tucson that wounded Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and killed six others. She has also covered eight Olympic Games, the funeral of Princess Diana and the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton in April 2011.

In addition to her career as an anchor and broadcast news reporter, Couric is the author of The New York Times bestseller, The Best Advice I Ever Got: Lessons From Extraordinary Lives. In addition, she co-wrote two successful children’s books: The Brand New Kid and The Blue Ribbon Day. She is active in several social media platforms, including Twitter (@katiecouric) and Facebook.

The CBS Evening News with Katie Couric received the Edward R. Murrow Award for Best Newscast in 2008 and 2009. The University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism awarded Couric the Walter Cronkite Award for Special Achievement in 2009 for “National Impact on the 2008 Campaign.” In 2009, the University of South Dakota and Freedom Forum awarded her the Al Neuharth Award for Excellence in the Media.

In 2010, Couric was awarded an Alfred I. duPont Award for her interview with Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin. The CBS Evening News with Katie Couric was awarded a second duPont for a series she conceived on the impact of the recession on children in America. She also received an Emmy for Outstanding Interview for her profile of Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, entitled Saving Flight 1549.

After losing her husband, Jay Monahan, to colon cancer in 1998, Couric became a public leader in the fight against the country’s second largest cancer killer. In March 2000, Couric launched the National Colorectal Cancer Research Alliance (NCCRA) with the Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF) and cancer activist Lilly Tartikoff to fund cutting-edge research in colorectal cancer and generate awareness about the life-saving value of screening. She also helped co-found The Jay Monahan Center for Gastrointestinal Health at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center – a comprehensive, fully integrated multi-disciplinary program that stresses education and prevention in addition to diagnosis and treatment of gastrointestinal cancers.

In addition, she is a co-founder of Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C), an organization that has raised nearly $200 million in funds to accelerate research that can get new therapies to patients quickly.

Born in Arlington, Virginia, Couric graduated with honors from the University of Virginia in 1979 with a bachelor’s degree in English and a focus on American Studies. She lives in New York City and has two daughters.

The evening lecture is sold out. Couric will meet with SMU journalism students and answer questions from University community members and local high school students in the Turner Construction/Wells Fargo Student Forum at 4:30 p.m. Nov. 29 in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Theater. The event is free, but seating is limited. SMU faculty, staff and students are encouraged to attend; RSVP online to ensure a place.

Learn more about this year’s Tate Lectures at smu.edu/tateseries

Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson delivers Tate Lecture Nov. 1

Astrophysicist and PBS 'NOVA scienceNOW' host Neil deGrasse TysonAstrophysicist and PBS NOVA scienceNOW host Neil deGrasse Tyson visits the Hilltop Tuesday, Nov. 1, to deliver the Jones Day Lecture in SMU’s 2011-12 Willis M. Tate Distinguished Lecture Series. The event begins at 8 p.m. in McFarlin Auditorium.

Tyson is the first occupant of the Frederick P. Rose Directorship of New York City’s Hayden Planetarium. His research interests include star formation, exploding stars, dwarf galaxies, and the structure of the Milky Way. In 2001, he was appointed by President George W. Bush to serve on a 12-member commission that studied the future of the U.S. aerospace industry. In 2004, Bush appointed him to serve on a 9-member commission on the implementation of the United States Space Exploration Policy, dubbed the Moon, Mars, and Beyond Commission.

Among Tyson’s nine books are his memoir, The Sky is Not the Limit: Adventures of an Urban Astrophysicist, and Origins: Fourteen Billion Years of Cosmic Evolution (co-written with Donald Goldsmith). The latter is the companion book to NOVA‘s 4-part mini-series “Origins,” in which Tyson serves as on-camera host. His latest works are the New York Times bestseller Death By Black Hole: And Other Cosmic Quandaries and The Pluto Files: The Rise and Fall of America’s Favorite Planet, which chronicles his experience at the center of the controversy over Pluto’s planetary status. The PBS/NOVA documentary “The Pluto Files,” based on the book, premiered in March 2010.

Since Fall 2006, Tyson has served as on-camera host of PBS’ NOVA spinoff program NOVA scienceNOW, which presents an accessible look at the frontiers of the sciences that shape our understanding of the universe. In August, it was announced that Tyson will host a sequel to Carl Sagan‘s groundbreaking 13-part series, Cosmos: A Personal Voyage. The new series, Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey, is scheduled to air in 2013 on Fox.

Tyson has received 12 honorary doctorates and the NASA Distinguished Public Service Medal, the highest award given by NASA to a non-government citizen. In addition, the International Astronomical Union named an asteroid in his honor in 2001; Asteroid 13123 Tyson was discovered in 1994 at Caltech’s Palomar Observatory.

Born and raised in New York City, Tyson was educated in the city’s public schools until his graduation from the Bronx High School of Science. He earned his B.A. degree in physics from Harvard and his Ph.D. in astrophysics from Columbia.

The evening lecture is sold out. Tyson will answer questions from SMU community members and local high school students in the Turner Construction/Wells Fargo Student Forum at 4:30 p.m. Nov. 1 in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Theater. The event is free, but seating is limited. SMU faculty, staff and students are encouraged to attend; RSVP online to ensure a place.

> Learn more about this year’s Tate Lectures at smu.edu/tateseries

Tate Lecture canceled for Oct. 18, 2011

SMU’s Tate Distinguished Lecture Series has announced that due to scheduling conflicts in her new role as president and CEO of Hewlett-Packard, Meg Whitman will be unable to participate in the Tate Lecture Oct. 18 and cannot commit to another date during the 2011-12 Tate season.

Tickets and parking passes dated Oct. 18 will be honored at a later date. A replacement speaker and date will be announced as soon as possible during the 2011-12 season.

> Read the full statement at the Tate Lecture Series homepage

Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates visits SMU Sept. 27-28

Former U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert M. GatesRobert M. Gates, former U.S. Secretary of Defense under Presidents Bush and Obama, will meet with the campus and Dallas communities during a visit to SMU Sept. 27-28, 2011.

Gates will deliver a special Tate Distinguished Lecture presented by Linda and Mitch Hart at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 27, in McFarlin Auditorium. He also will speak with Dallas Independent School District students in the Hart Global Leaders Forum at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 28.

As the United States’ 22nd Secretary of Defense from 2006 to 2011, Gates warned of the danger of over-reliance on military intervention as an instrument of American foreign policy. He directed the troop surge during the war in Iraq and also directed the beginning of troop withdrawal from Iraq in 2008, a policy that has continued into the Obama administration. In 2009, he became the 14th Cabinet member in history to serve under two presidents of different parties, and the first to do so as Secretary of Defense.

Dr. Gates served as Director of Central Intelligence from 1991 to 1993 and is the only career officer in CIA history to rise from entry-level employee to director. He served as Deputy Director of Central Intelligence from 1986-89 and as Assistant to the President and Deputy National Security Adviser under President George H.W. Bush from January 1989 to November 1991.

Gates served as the interim dean of the George H.W. Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University from 1999 to 2001 and became the 22nd President of Texas A&M in August 2002, serving until his appointment as Secretary of Defense in 2006.

Dr. Gates has also served on the Board of Directors and Executive Committee of the American Council on Education, the Board of Directors of the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges, and the National Executive Board of the Boy Scouts of America. He has also been president of the National Eagle Scout Association.

In 2008, Gates was named one of “America’s Best Leaders” by U.S. News & World Report. Upon his retirement in 2011, he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian award, from President Obama.

A native of Kansas, Gates received his B.A. degree in history from The College of William & Mary in Virginia and his M.A. in history from Indiana University. He earned his Ph.D. degree in Russian and Soviet history from Georgetown University. In 1967 he was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force and served as an intelligence officer at Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri.

On Sept. 6, 2011, Gates was named the 24th chancellor of his alma mater, The College of William & Mary, where he also received an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters in 1998. He will succeed former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor as chancellor upon the completion of her term in February 2012.

Gates will answer questions from SMU community members and local high school students in the Tate Lecture Series Student Forum at 4:30 p.m. Sept. 27 in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom. The event is free, but seating is limited. RSVP online to ensure a place.

Single tickets are still available for the Tate Lecture. Current SMU students may receive one free admission each with their University IDs by reporting to the McFarlin basement 30 minutes before the lecture begins.

> Learn more about this year’s Tate Lectures at smu.edu/tateseries

2011-12 Tate Lecture season begins Sept. 6

James A. Baker III, Fareed Zakaria and David GergenFormer U.S. Secretary of State James A. Baker III and journalist Fareed Zakaria will offer their insights on current events and international politics Sept. 6 in the first event of the Willis M. Tate Distinguished Lecture Series‘ 2011-12 season.

Baker, honorary chair of the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University, headed the U.S. Department of State during the administration of George H.W. Bush. Previously he served as chief of staff in Ronald Reagan’s first administration and as Secretary of the Treasury in the second Reagan administration. Zakaria is editor-at-large of TIME magazine and host of CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS.” The two will participate in a discussion moderated by news analyst, former White House adviser and longtime Tate Series favorite David Gergen.

The lecture is sold out. All SMU community members are invited to attend the Tate Lecture Series Student Forum with the speakers at 4:30 p.m. on lecture day in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom. Doors open at 4 p.m. Seats may be reserved online, and reserved seats are guaranteed until 4:15 p.m.

This year’s Tate Lecture line-up, announced at The Daily Beast founder Tina Brown‘s lecture May 11, includes former U.S. Secretary of Defense and 24th chancellor of the College of William & Mary Robert M. Gates, former eBay president and CEO Meg Whitman, astrophysicist and PBS “NOVA scienceNOW” host Neil deGrasse Tyson, broadcaster Katie Couric, Aspen Institute president and CEO and Teach For America chair Walter Isaacson, columnist Charles Krauthammer, and journalist Bill Moyers.

Learn more about this season’s Tate lecturers and the Tate Student Forum series for the community at smu.edu/tateseries.