Extraordinary interest prompts University of Rhode Island to host Jane Goodall lecture at Ryan Center

Free tickets available Friday

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Dr. Jane Goodall
Photo courtesy of the Jane Goodall Institute.
Neither Dr. Jane Goodall nor the Jane Goodall Institute endorses the handling of wild chimpanzees. The chimpanzee depicted in this image was rescued and is being cared for at the Jane Goodall Institute's Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center in the Republic of Congo.

KINGSTON, R.I. — August 17, 2017 — With people calling from as far away as the U.S.-Canada border, Long Island, Florida and everywhere in between about Jane Goodall’s lecture, the University of Rhode Island has moved her talk from Edwards Hall to its largest event venue, the Ryan Center.

The renowned animal behavior expert, conservationist, founder of the Jane Goodall Institute and United Nations Messenger of Peace will speak Tuesday, Sept. 19 at 7 p.m. as part of the University’s premier lecture series, the Honors Colloquium: Origins: Life, the Universe and Everything.  Her talk is titled “Tomorrow & Beyond: 40 Years of the Jane Goodall Institute.” Due to extremely high demand, tickets to Jane Goodall’s lecture are currently no longer available. Patrons are encouraged to check back frequently to see if additional tickets have been released.

The other nine public lectures will be held at Edwards Hall and do not require a ticket. URI’s premier lecture series, now in its 54th year, will open Sept. 12 at 7 p.m. with an address by Hakeem Oluseyi, titled “The Birth of Being: From the Big Bang to Babies.” Oluseyi is an astrophysicist, cosmologist, inventor, TV host and educator. He is space sciences education manager for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate and Distinguished Researcher Professor of Physics and Space Sciences at Florida Institute of Technology.

“The Honors Program has offered a wide array of timely, compelling, and enlightening lectures during the past 53 years of the Honors Colloquium,” said URI Professor and Honors Program Director Lynne Derbyshire. “We are delighted to present this extraordinary set of speakers that will address such topics as the origins of the universe and its continuing expansion, the beginning of life, our connections to other primates, the conscious and unconscious mind and the potential for life elsewhere in the universe. Please join us for all of our exciting lectures, including our opening night with Dr. Oluseyi, who will take us on a journey across the millennia as he provides an overview for the entire series.

“With Dr. Goodall, the Honors Colloquium has experienced a first, a lecture being moved from its original venue to the Ryan Center,” Derbyshire said. “Since we announced Dr. Goodall’s lecture July 18, many of us at the University have received calls and emails from people up and down the East Coast seeking tickets. “To my knowledge, we have never had tickets for an Honors Colloquium, but we wanted to make sure people didn’t show up, only to be turned away at the door.”

Goodall’s discovery that chimpanzees make and use tools revolutionized the world of primatology and redefined the relationship between humans and animals. At the invitation of famed anthropologist and paleontologist Louis Leakey, she began her research in 1960 at what was then called the Gombe Stream Chimpanzee Reserve in Tanzania.

In 1977, Goodall established the Jane Goodall Institute, which continues the work of the Gombe Stream Research Center and is a global leader in the effort to protect chimpanzees and their habitats. It is widely recognized for building on Goodall’s groundbreaking, community-centered approach to conservation and development programs in Africa and for its Roots & Shoots program, the global environmental and humanitarian youth initiative she founded in 1991 with a group of Tanzanian students. The youth program connects more than 15,000 young people in nearly 100 countries, equipping them to make the world a better place for people, animals and the environment. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the organization and the 125th anniversary of the University.

Today, Goodall travels an average of 300 days per year, speaking about the threats facing chimpanzees, other environmental crises and her reasons for hope. In her speeches and books she emphasizes the interconnectedness of all living things and the collective power of individual action, urging her audiences to recognize their personal responsibility and ability to effect change.

Note to news media: Reporters, photographers. broadcasters and videographers who wish to cover the event should email Dave Lavallee in the Department of Marketing and Communications at dlavallee@uri.edu. Please provide your name, title, news organization, cell number and email when responding. Broadcast outlets will be restricted to recording only the first 5 minutes of the lecture. Professional still photographers with authorized media credentials will be able to photograph the entire event, but they should use caution with flash. Members of the audience are prohibited from taking pictures with flash. No interviews will be scheduled prior to the day of the event, but Marketing and Communications is hoping to provide media with a brief interview period before the lecture. There is no time for individual interviews with Dr. Goodall.