Dean’s Lecture Series

The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Dean’s Lecture Series highlights faculty excellence in learning, discovery, and engagement in Iowa State’s largest college. The dean invites LAS faculty of distinction to present lectures from their own areas of expertise on topics of interest to the general public, designed to stimulate high-quality, intellectual discussion among faculty, staff, students, and community members.

Lectures are held during the fall and spring semesters during the academic year.

Fall 2020 Dean’s Lecture

Novotny Lawrence

Novotny Lawrence, associate professor of communications

“White Mansions, Black Bodies: Jordan Peele’s Get Out and the New Age Slave Plantation”
Virtual Event, Link coming soon.
Thursday, November 5, 2020 at 6:00 p.m.

This lecture will discuss Jordan Peele’s horror thriller “Get Out,” demonstrating the ways in which the director employs traditional filmmaking storytelling tropes to examine contemporary racial politics. Peele uses the cinema as a tool for social activism, working to help create a future in which citizens will potentially be more informed about, attuned to, and concerned with fighting against systemic racism.

Read more and find the event links at

Fall 2019 Dean’s Lecture

Kelly Winfrey, assistant professor of journalism
“Gender and Communication on the Campaign Trail”

Spring 2019 Dean’s Lecture

Borzoo Bonakdarpour, assistant professor of computer science
“Designing Secure Fleets of Drones: Possibilities, Challenges, and Limitations”

Fall 2018 Dean’s Lecture

Robbyn Anand, assistant professor of chemistry
“Divide and Conquer: Stopping Cancer One Cell at a Time”

Spring 2018 Lecture

Eric William Davis, Department of Computer Science
“Is Your Data Safe? Corruption, Money Laundering, and the Malicious Side of Data”

Fall 2017 Lecture

Matt DeLisi, Department of Sociology
“Severe 5%: Understanding the Criminal Justice Syste”m

Spring 2017 Lecture

Robyn Lutz, Department of Computer Science
“Programming Molecules in the Age of Nanotechnology”

Spring 2016 Lecture

Michael Christopher Low, Department of History
“ISIS, Jihadist Violence, and the Quest for an Idealized Islamic State”

Fall 2015 Lecture

Alison Phillips, Department of Psychology
“Health-Related Habits…Scientifically Speaking”

Spring 2015 Lecture

Mayly Sanchez, Department of Physics and Astronomy
“Measuring the Elusive: How to Catch Neutrinos and What They Tell Us About the Universe”