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Apollo astronaut Harrison Schmitt, a scientist who walked on the moon and later represented his home state of New Mexico in the U.S. Senate, will deliver three talks at Lafayette College on Monday, April 19.

He will give a major lecture entitled “A Trip to the Moon and Beyond” at 8 p.m. in the Williams Center for the Arts.

He will also give two other talks that day, “The Evolution of the Moon and Mars: Apollo Model” at noon, and “An Energy Future from Space: Helium-3 Fusion Power” at 4 p.m., both in the auditorium of the Simon Center for Economics and Business Administration. All events are free and open to the public.

Schmitt was the Lunar Module pilot on Apollo 17, the last Apollo mission to the moon. On December 11, 1972, he became the only scientist and the last of 12 men to step on the moon.

“The Apollo program is a major historical event that predates anyone under 30, including our students,” said Dru Germanoski, associate professor of geology and environmental geosciences and coordinator of the environmental science program. “Harrison Schmitt is the only scientist to have walked and worked on the moon, so he is a natural choice to bring the excitement of the Apollo program to our campus.”

Schmitt has the diverse experience of a geologist, pilot, astronaut, businessman, writer, and U.S. Senator. He was a Fulbright Scholar at Oslo and Harvard, holds a doctorate in geology and received Air Force jet pilot wings in 1965 and Navy helicopter wings in 1967.

Selected for the Scientist-Astronaut program in 1965, Schmitt, a native of Silver City, N.M., organized the lunar science training for the Apollo astronauts, managed much of the development of hardware and procedures for lunar surface exploration, and oversaw the final preparation of the Apollo Lunar Module Descent Stage. Before going to the moon on Apollo 17, he was Mission Scientist in support of the Apollo 11 mission and back-up Lunar Module pilot for Apollo 15.

Following his career with the Apollo missions, Schmitt managed NASA’s Energy Program Office and served in the U.S. Senate from 1977 through 1982, representing New Mexico.

Schmitt consults, speaks, and writes on policy issues of the future, space, and the American Southwest. He presently serves as chair of The Annapolis Center and holds an appointment as adjunct professor in the department of engineering at the University of Wisconsin. He is also a member of many corporate boards in the technology industry.

He is the recipient of the NASA Distinguished Service Award, the 1989 Lovelace Award (space biomedicine), the 1989 G. K. Gilbert Award (planetology), as well as several honorary degrees. He is an Honorary Member of the Norwegian Geographical Society and Geological Association of Canada, and Honorary Fellow of the Geological Society of America, and the Geological Society of London.

Schmitt’s visit is sponsored by Lafayette’s Cultural program, the Environmental Science Minor Committee, the Provost’s Office, the engineering division, the bachelor of arts in engineering program, and the departments of geology and environmental geosciences, biology, chemistry, mathematics, physics, psychology, chemical engineering, and civil and environmental engineering.

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