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University of Maryland - Baltimore County (UMBC)

Engaging Scientists Campus Events


Open House

March 25, 2019

9:00 - 11:00 am ET


March 25, 2019

12:00 - 4:00 pm ET

Panel Discussion
(Open to the public)

Monday, March 25, 2019

5:30 - 7:30 pm EST

Panel Discussion: Science Engagement and Dialogue with Faith Communities

Free and open to the public

Monday, March 25, 2019, 5:30 - 7:00 pm
University Center Ballroom
University of Maryland - Baltimore County (Baltimore, MD)

The UMBC community and the AAAS Dialogue on Science, Ethics, and Religion (DoSER) program hosted a series of short presentations and a panel discussion on science engagement with faith communities. The panel of science communicators, scientists and medical professionals shared insights drawn from their diverse backgrounds and interests.


Rabbi Geoff Mitelman founded Sinai and Synapses, and organization with expertise in constructive discourse on science and society topic with religious communities. He was ordained by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion and graduated from Princeton University with a degree in Religion and Jewish Studies. Rabbi Mitelman led the congregation of Temple Beth El of Northern Westchester for seven years, and his writing on the intersection of religion and science has appeared widely.
Dr. Pamela Payne-Foster is a preventive medicine and public health physician who is an associate professor in the Department of Community and Rural Medicine and deputy director of the Institute for Rural Health Research at The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa Regional Campus. She has expertise in community health partnerships with churches and other faith communities.
Dr. Altaf Saadi is a neurologist and fellow at the National Clinical Scholars Program at the University of California, Los Angeles, where she focuses on promoting healthcare leadership in health policy, health services, and community-partnered research. Dr. Saadi is active in social justice and science-informed advocacy in the public sphere.
Dr. Caitlin Schrein is the strategic communications editor at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and a science communicator specializing in anthropology and evolution. Her doctoral research examined the relationship between human evolution education and students’ interest in science and their decision-making about social issues with a scientific basis, such as climate change. She particularly focused on life sciences pedagogy that is sensitive to students’ culture, faith, and worldview.