Distinguished Scholar to Lecture on Science, C.S. Lewis


Palm Beach Atlantic University will host its annual President’s Distinguished Scholar Lecture this month with Dr. Henry F. Schaefer III, Graham Perdue Professor of Chemistry and director of the Center for Computational Quantum Chemistry at the University of Georgia since 1987.

Dr. Henry F. “Fritz” Schaefer III, Graham Perdue Professor of Chemistry and director of the Center for Computational Quantum Chemistry at the University of Georgia, will speak at Palm Beach Atlantic University on Oct. 21. PBA is a private, Christ-centered college in West Palm Beach, Fla., USA.
Dr. Henry F. Schaefer III

Dr. Schaefer’s lecture titled “C.S. Lewis: Science and Scientism” is free and open="open" to the public Monday, Oct. 21, at 7:30 p.m. in the University’s DeSantis Family Chapel, 300 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach.

Dr. Schaefer was born in Grand Rapids, Mich., and attended public schools in Syracuse, N.Y., Menlo Park, Calif., and Grand Rapids, Mich., graduating from East Grand Rapids High School in 1962. He received his B.S. degree in chemical physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1966 and Ph.D. degree in chemical physics from Stanford University in 1969. For 18 years he served as a professor of chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley.

At the University of Georgia Dr. Schaefer teaches an oversubscribed freshman seminar “Science and Christianity: Conflict or Coherence?” Dr. Schaefer's book with the same title had its second edition published in June 2013. The book reached position No. 84 on the best-selling list of Amazon.com.

He is the author of more than 1,400 scientific publications, and Dr. Schaefer has been invited to present plenary lectures at more than 250 national or international scientific conferences. He has delivered endowed or named lectures or lecture series at more than 50 major universities.

Dr. Schaefer’s major awards include the American Chemical Society Award in Pure Chemistry in 1979; the American Chemical Society Leo Hendrik Baekeland Award in 1983; the Schrödinger Medal in 1990; the Centenary Medal of the Royal Society of Chemistry in 1992; and the American Chemical Society Award in Theoretical Chemistry in 2003. Also in 2003 he received the annual American Chemical Society Ira Remsen Award, named after the first chemistry research professor in North America.

Dr. Schaefer also been honored with several prestigious awards for his discoveries in and influence on advances in chemistry including the Chemical Pioneer Award from the American Institute of Chemists and the Humboldt Research Award from Germany’s Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. Most recently, he has been selected to receive the 2014 Peter Debye Award in Physical Chemistry sponsored by the E. I. du Pont de Nemours & Co.

He is well known as a student of the relationship between science and religion. One or more of the lectures in his popular lecture series on this important topic have been presented at most major universities in North America, including Harvard, Stanford, Berkeley, M.I.T., Yale, Princeton, and the Universities of Alberta and Toronto.

His continuously evolving lecture “The Big Bang, Stephen Hawking and God” appears in many locations and in several languages on the worldwide web. This lecture has been one of the most popular articles about science on the web in recent years, as discussed in Michael White and John Gribbin’s best-selling biography of Professor Hawking (pages 314-315 of the 2002 edition).

In addition to his public lecture, Dr. Schaefer will speak at chapel and in classes at Palm Beach Atlantic.