Evolutionary Studies series asks: Why does the sunlight in Wooster Hall matter?

With contributions from Valerine Gomez Beco ’21
Raj Pandya at Wooster Hall

The SUNY New Paltz Evolutionary Studies Program invites students, faculty, staff and community members to a discussion about the power of solstices, equinoxes and the movements of the sun to inspire human beings.

Solar Events and the Human Experience: Why the Sunlight in Wooster Hall Matters,” will be held on Monday, March 25, beginning at 6 p.m. It is free and open to the public.

Also on March 25, the College invites community members to observe the Spring Equinox at 12:45 p.m. in the Wooster Hall lobby area (the actual day of the Equinox, March 20, falls during spring break). Join us to watch as the solar noon sunlight passes through carefully designed windows and aligns with patterns at the foot of the stairwell.

The evening lecture will be given by Raj Pandya, director of the John R. Kirk Planetarium and lecturer of physics & astronomy, and Joseph Diamond, associate professor of anthropology, as part of this spring’s Evolutionary Studies Seminar Series. The event is co-sponsored by the Department of Anthropology.

Pandya will dive into the math and physics of how the solar events in Wooster Hall work, and Diamond will put the Wooster sunlight in the context of solar experiences in historical and cross-cultural perspective.

Randy Croxton, president of Croxton Collaborative Architects and the lead architectural firm for the Wooster Hall redesign, will also be on hand to offer a few words about the process of designing a “Stonehenge” element that marks the passage of time in the same way as England’s famous prehistoric monument.

Following the lecture, a reception will take place in the lobby of the Coykendall Science Building.

The Evolutionary Studies Program at SUNY New Paltz fosters opportunities for faculty and students to develop a deep understanding of evolutionary ideas, conduct cross-disciplinary research, and contribute to novel ideas across disciplines.

More information about the Evolutionary Studies Program at SUNY New Paltz is available online.