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The first event in the spring edition of the University of New Mexico’s Lightning Lounge, titled "Life and Death,” is set for Thursday, Feb. 5. Additional spring semester Lightning Lounge events are scheduled for March 19 and April 2. Each will be held at the Faculty-Staff Club from 5:30 to 7 p.m. The Lightning Lounge events are open to all faculty and staff. Snacks will be provided and a cash bar is also available.

The Lightning Lounge began last fall and was greeted enthusiastically by the campus community. Each lounge consists five presenters with seven minutes discussing their concepts with time allotted for comments and questions.

Associate Provost for Faculty Development Virginia Scharff put together the mix of short talks from faculty last fall to help people converse more freely and harmoniously in an informal atmosphere about the research that the faculty conducts across campus.

Topics in the spring lounge range from “A Mammoth Amount of Methane: The Role of Large Mammals on the Ecosphere” by Professor Felisa Smith in the Biology Department to the “Big Bird goes to China” by Assistant Professor Tamara Kay in the Department of Sociology to “Your Brain’s Built-in Navigation System” by Assistant Professor Benjamin Clark in the Department of Psychology.

The other themed Lightning Lounge events include "Here and There" on Thursday, March 19 and "Sending Messages" on Thursday, April 2.

"We're really looking forward to getting together to hear about research across the university in a fun and engaging format, and to celebrating the work we love," Scharff said. “The Lightning Lounge events are designed to be informative, laid-back and friendly with the hopes to entertain while sharing research only found in universities.”

For a complete schedule of events, visit Lightning Lounge.