Science has an enormous impact on our world, for good and for ill. This means that scientists have a responsibility to consider the consequences of their work and to explain to others its potential benefits and risks.
The Parlee Center for Science and the Common Good helps mold thoughtful and responsible graduates prepared for this task through programs that unite the Ursinus culture of research and creativity with the habits of inquiry and reflection cultivated by the four questions of the Ursinus Open Questions Core Curriculum:
- What should matter to me?
- How should we live together?
- How can we understand the world?
- What will I do?
Beginning with science as one way of understanding the world, the Parlee Center challenges students to consider the connection between science and other ways of understanding – ethical, political, religious, artistic – and to ponder how science can help or hinder our efforts to live together. With programs that involve students from their earliest days on campus, the Parlee Center engages them on key issues that should matter to them, and helps guide them in choosing what they will do.
The Parlee Center supports:
- a speaker series that brings to campus models of civically-engaged scientists;
- a student Fellows program to shape responsible leaders in science;
- the FUTURE summer research program, in which students from groups under-represented in science are guided by faculty and upper-class student mentors;
- new courses and internships at the intersection of science and society.