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Accomplished astronaut, entrepreneur Dr. Scott E. Parazynski to give
Inaugural John Glenn Lecture in Earth and Planetary Sciences at Muskingum University

Dr. Scott E. Parazynski, a veteran of five Space Shuttle missions, physician, explorer and entrepreneur, will give the inaugural lecture in The John Glenn Distinguished Lecture Series in Earth and Planetary Sciences at 3:30 p.m. on April 5 in Boyd Science Center Room 343, Muskingum University announced today. The new lecture series was established to honor the memory of John Glenn, Dr. Parazynski’s childhood hero and one of Muskingum University’s most accomplished alumni. The event is free and open to the public.

Scott E. Parazynski“John Glenn was an American patriot and a personal hero of mine, although if he were here today, I’m sure he would quickly retreat, bashfully saying he didn’t feel worthy of such praise. That’s just who he was,” said Dr. Parazynski, who flew on mission STS-95 with Glenn in 1998 as his personal physician. “Sharing the rare experience of spaceflight with John is my most lasting memory. I am honored to have been invited to speak in the lecture series that bears his name, and I’m looking forward to exploring the institution and community that helped raise him.”

Dr. Parazynski is a member of the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame and has lived and traveled around the world. A graduate of Stanford University and Stanford Medical School, he went on to train at Harvard and in Denver for a career in emergency medicine and trauma before being selected to join NASA’s Astronaut Corps in 1992. Over the course of five missions in space, Dr. Parazynski conducted seven spacewalks, including the first joint U.S.-Russian spacewalk while docked to the Russian space station, Mir and a solar array repair on mission STS-120, regarded as one of the most challenging and dangerous ever performed. He has been published numerous times in the field of space physiology with particular expertise in human adaptation to stressful environments.

“Dr. Parazynski is a champion of human exploration and innovation. From the depths of space to the peaks of Mt. Everest, his life is a reminder to all of us to embrace the many opportunities we have to challenge ourselves and look for new solutions every day,” said Dr. Susan Hasseler, president of Muskingum University. “We are extremely grateful to Dr. Parazynski, a friend of John and Annie Glenn, for agreeing to serve as our first speaker.”

In addition to his medical and interplanetary pursuits, Dr. Parazynski is a lifelong scuba diver and accomplished mountaineer, having climbed to the summit of the world’s highest peak on Mt. Everest. He’s also a prolific inventor and entrepreneur, serving on the boards of several companies and founding several others. His upcoming memoir, The Sky Below: A True Story of Summits, Space, and Speed, will be available for purchase in July.

The John Glenn Distinguished Lecture Series in Earth and Planetary Sciences was established and endowed by alumnus Bill Lovejoy ‘51 and his late wife Martha ‘52. The lectureship will feature an annual speaker, to be chosen by a committee of faculty members from the Muskingum University departments of biology, geology and physics. This year’s lecture is part of a week of events beginning April 2 that celebrate the inauguration of Dr. Susan Hasseler as the University’s 21st president.

“This lecture series is a fitting tribute to Muskingum’s most illustrious graduate, whose lifetime accomplishments will serve to inspire and motivate students and faculty at Muskingum in all academic fields for generations to come,” Lovejoy said. “I could hardly think of a more appropriate inaugural speaker than a friend and former crewmate of Sen. Glenn’s, the highly accomplished Dr. Scott Parazynski.”

For more information about Dr. Scott Parazynski or The John Glenn Distinguished Lecture Series in Earth and Planetary Sciences, visit the lecture website. To learn more about Dr. Susan Hasseler, Muskingum University’s 21st president or the presidential inauguration week events, visit the Inauguration website.