KIRSTY Wark, the journalist and broadcaster, and historian and author Sir Max Hastings are among the high-profile speakers lined up to help celebrate the 90th anniversary of Dundee University’s popular Saturday Evening Lecture Series.
SELS is Scotland’s oldest continuous free public lecture series and attracts thousands of people each year eager to hear from prestigious, world-class speakers.
A university spokesman said: “The tradition of holding public lectures dates right back to the founding of University College Dundee in 1881. The early professors and staff were keen to establish and strengthen ties with the people of Dundee and Tayside holding evening classes, giving public lectures and undertaking welfare projects such as those of the Dundee Social Union
“The evening lectures as we know them today can be traced back to a series of lectures held jointly with the Dundee Naturalists Society beginning with a lecture by Principal John Yule Mackay on Primitive Man in October 1924.”
He continued: “To mark the 90th anniversary, an extended programme of events will run throughout the year, beginning with a talk by Dr Caroline Shenton, former Director of the Parliamentary Archives at Westminster and an honorary teaching fellow of the University’s Centre for Archive and Information Studies, on 1 February.
“Speakers include geologist Professor Iain Stewart, entrepreneur Chris van der Kuyl and space medicine pioneer Dr Kevin Fong. Some of the university’s leading professors will also be joining in the anniversary celebrations and more dates will be announced over the coming months.”
Professor Pete Downes, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the university, said: “For 90 years, the Saturday Evening Lecture Series has been the flagship public engagement programme for the university, and we are delighted with the exciting line-up for this special anniversary year.
“Over the years, tens of thousands of visitors have come to campus to hear from an astonishing range of speakers and we look forward to welcoming many more in 2014.”