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People’s University Kicks Off New Series: ‘Physical Science And the Joy of Discovery’

WHEELING — The Ohio County Public Library in partnership with the Wheeling Academy of Law & Science (WALS) Foundation will offer the 31st entry in its People’s University series as a six-class online, livestream presentation.

“Physical Science, The Joy of Discovery” will take attendees on a journey through the philosophical and intellectual development of science as a method of accurately weighing evidence, eliminating bias, finding facts, and acquiring knowledge.

The opening classes in the series will explore, in part, the following themes: science is not political; science is not magical; science is not faith or belief; science is not based on feelings; it’s not a conspiracy and has no hidden agenda. Science is the earnest pursuit of what is true in terms of the best available, logically generated evidence. Science recognizes that it’s OK to be wrong and to learn from it.

Later classes in the series will explore the history and fundamental building blocks of the pillars of physical science: chemistry and physics. Attendees will learn about what matter and energy are and what laws they obey. Additional cleaasse will explore specific applications of chemistry, namely laser technology as well as combating multi-drug resistant bacteria through drug discovery.

Attendees who “like,” comment, or ask a question will be elibigle to win a door prize at each session.

All classes meet on Thursday evenings at 6:30 p.m.

The first class will take place on Thursday, Jan. 14, with the Week 1 installment, “The Philosophy of Science.”

Instructor Mary Ellen Cassidy will ask and explore answers to questions such as, “what is science and who cares?” “Why is science revered or rejected?” “What is the role of science in society’s decision-making and in its search for equity?”

Cassidy’s professional background includes teaching and research in the areas of chemistry, statistics, algebra and environmental science. Her community background includes Appalachian Institute director, New Energy Economy Coordinator at WALS, Wheeling Solar Co-op coordinator, Solar United Neighbors of West Virginia board member and Energy Efficient West Virginia Steering Committee member. She is currently enjoying her work as a mathematics and science tutor at West Virginia Northern Community College’s Academic Support Center.

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