A program for making important connections

Science, Technology and Society is an interdisciplinary minor program that offers courses and sponsors campus events relating to the interaction between science and society.

Through innovative courses such as "Population" and "The History of Medicine," students encounter cross-disciplinary issues of great import. Several of our upper-level courses are unique to Franklin & Marshall and would not generally be available at a liberal arts college.

With three distinct minors — History and Philosophy of Science, Science and Society, and Medicine in Society— STS enables students to design programs of study tailored to their particular interests with the help of the program chair and members of the faculty.

Each minor program is designed to culminate in an upper-level seminar or independent study involving original research. In close collaboration with faculty researchers, minors have pursued research on subjects ranging from the history of physiology and cell biology and reductionism in the life sciences to the political and geological considerations involved in siting several nuclear power plants and the Yucca Mt. radioactive waste repository in Nevada.

The program regularly sponsors visiting speakers, including the annual Darwin Day Lecture, which has been given by a string of very distinguished, and entertaining, scholars.

Darwin Day 2022

Franklin & Marshall’s annual Darwin Day Celebration 

February 10, 2022

11:30 am-12:30 pm






This year’s presenter is the 2021 Dewey Award Lecture, Biology professor Dr. Dan Ardia, speaking on, “How Animals Respond to a Changing Environment: A global and local perspective.”

This Dewey Award Lecture will be presented by Professor Dan Ardia, the 2021 recipient of the Bradley R. Dewey Award for Outstanding Scholarship. Prof. Ardia will discuss his research on how birds and mammals respond to a rapidly changing environment. Insights from international research in South America and Africa will be integrated with studies across North America and right here in Lancaster. 

Dan has been a Professor of Biology at Franklin & Marshall College since 2006. Prior to joining the faculty, he was a Darwin Postdoctoral Fellow at Amherst College and the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. He received his PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from Cornell, a MS in Environmental and Forest Biology from the SUNY-College of Environmental Science and Forestry, and a BS in Biology, Political Science, and Environmental Studies from Tufts University. The Darwin Day Celebration is a project of the Science, Technology and Society Program. 


  • Dan Ardia stands in front of a tropical tree holding a bird with a long, curved beak, wearing a tee-shirt that says, "remember me? I'm your mother," around a drawing of the earth.
  • Two people in a field wearing thin down jackets, one is peering into a bird box mounted on a pole, and the other is looking into the camera. The sky is full of clouds with small patches of blue peeking through.
Darwin Day 2020 

The Joy of Atheism: Denis Diderot and the Art of Thinking Freely

Denis Diderot (1713-1784) was one of Darwin’s intellectual heroes. Best known as the editor of the first comprehensive Encyclopédie, Diderot was, above all, a master of dissent and a true freethinker, even by contemporary standards. For Franklin & Marshall College's 2020 celebration of International Darwin Day, Andrew Curran reveals how the French philosophe and writer helped create the foundations of the modern world.

Andrew Curran is the William Armstrong Professor of the Humanities, and  Professor of French, Chair, Department of Romance Languages and Literatures at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT.

This event enjoyed generous support from the Department of French, the Miller Humanities Fund, the Public Affairs Lecture Fund, and the program for Science, Technology and Society. 

Enjoy a video presentation of the full lecture here:





Darwin Day 2019 

The Evolution of the Moral Sense: Implications for Modern Ethics

Each year the Program for Science, Technology and Society presents a luncheon and lecture presentation in honor of the birth of Charles Darwin (February 12, 1809), celebrating what has become known as "Darwin Day."  This year's event took place on February 15 and featured F&M Assistant Professor of Psychology and Scientific & Philosophical Studies of Mind, Dr. Josh Rottman. 

Dr. Rottman received a B.A.with honors  in Cognitive Science from Vassar College in 2008 and a Ph.D. in Psychology from Boston University in 2015. Dr. Rottman's research lies at the intersection of cognitive development and moral psychology. His work primarily focuses on children's acquisition of moral norms, the role of disgust in moral judgment, and cognitive precursors of environmentalist ethics.  He is the Director of the Developing Morals Lab here at F&M. 

You may click on the video below to view the entire presentation:

Darwin Day 2019, Franklin & Marshall College, Lancaster, PA, USA