Rebecca Skloot, author of "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks," will be The College of St. Scholastica's Centennial community keynote speaker at 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 18, at Symphony Hall of the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center.
She'll be interviewed on stage by Kerri Miller, co-host of Minnesota Public Radio's "The Daily Circuit." Skloot will sign books afterward.
The event is free and open to the public, though tickets are required through the St. Scholastica box office, (218) 723-7000.
Community discussions about Skloot's book and the issues it raises are occurring before the talk in Virginia, Cloquet and Duluth. Details are available at centennial.css.edu.
St. Scholastica's first-year students read "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks" as part of their Dignitas program, and the book is also the Duluth Public Library's "One Book, One Community" city-wide read.
The book's themes "include health care, science, race, class, and ethics," noted Beth Domholdt, vice president of academic affairs at St. Scholastica, and an organizer who helped arrange Skloot's appearance. "Those are things we're deeply concerned with at St. Scholastica. We have such strong health science and health programs, and a book that helps our students see the real ethical dilemmas in the health sciences is just a fabulous fit for who we are."
Skloot's free public appearance is part of St. Scholastica's plan to take its Centennial celebration beyond campus.
"Outreach to the community is part of our goal in celebrating our Centennial," she noted. "We're glad to offer Ms. Skloot's insights to the broader region."
St. Scholastica was founded in 1912. Programming and activities in honor of its 100th birthday will continue through autumn.