On Friday, February 2, 2024, a group of MCA students attended a seminar for high school students on the relationship between science and faith hosted by Notre Dame University's McGrath Institute. The St. Albert Initiative, a program focusing on science and faith for Catholic high school students, teachers, and parents, featured short talks by Catholic scientists. Attendees had the opportunity to meet, eat with, and ask questions of Catholic scientists in various fields.
The conference schedule included a 45-minute Opening Talk on "Science and Religion: the Myth of Conflict," followed by 'Lightning Round' Talks. Three rounds of 25-minute talks were offered, with a menu of 10 talks to choose from. A notable component was the Big Questions/Ask-a-Scientist Poster Session, where attendees had the opportunity to engage with Catholic scientists one-on-one. They could ask questions about various fields of science, including virology, the fossil record, the human brain, energy and the environment, stem cells, cancer, evolution, astronomy, and artificial intelligence.
The St. Albert Initiative was sponsored by the Science and Religion Initiative of the McGrath Institute for Church Life, and the Society of Catholic Scientists (SCS), with generous grant funding from the John Templeton Foundation.
MCA alumna Heather Machado, Ph.D., Tulane University School of Medicine (MCA Class of '94) spoke to the students about Breast Cancer Biology.