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    Marlene MacLeish Honored for Leadership in Science Education Honorary degree recognizes MSM professor’s lifelong work to bring “space to the masses”

    November 1, 2010


    Media Contact:
    Frances Thompkins

    Marlene MacLeish Honored for Leadership in Science Education Honorary degree recognizes MSM professor’s lifelong work to bring “space to the masses”

    ATLANTA – Morehouse School of Medicine professor of medical education Marlene MacLeish, Ed.D., will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws (LL.D.) degree from her alma mater, the University of Western Ontario, on Oct. 29 at the university’s 296th convocation. Western Ontario is one of Canada’s top research universities, and will recognize Dr. MacLeish for her outstanding contributions to science education, particularly in the field of space science.

    A leading spokesperson for space education in the U.S. and worldwide, Dr. MacLeish has worked to bring “space to the masses” as a NASA team leader, directed educational outreach for the six-nation Neurolab mission to study the brain in space, and chaired the education section of the International Humans in Space symposium. She has pioneered new models of teaching and training for space exploration through the National Space Biomedical Research Institute, and directs the Institute’s outreach program at Morehouse School of Medicine. Dr. MacLeish has also published extensively in peer-reviewed journals and produced a six-part radio series, “Biomedical Science for Space Travelers,” and the documentary film “Exploring Two Frontiers: The Brain in Space.”

    Despite her many accomplishments, Dr. MacLeish says the Western Ontario honor is especially meaningful. “There is something special about recognition that comes, unexpectedly, from a place that you consider to be ‘home.’ This honor from Western forces me to contemplate the long journey that has brought me to this point in my career. My accomplishments, many of which seemed absolutely improbable when I graduated from Western in 1968, grew out of the foundations of my Brescia/University of Western Ontario liberal arts education,” says Dr. MacLeish.

    Dr. MacLeish received her B.A. in Psychology from Brescia University College at the University of Western Ontario and a master’s and doctorate in Education from Harvard University. She has been honored with Brescia University College’s highest award, the “Woman of Distinction,” and is a member of the International Academy of Astronautics in Paris, France.

    Before joining Morehouse School of Medicine, Dr. MacLeish served as dean and vice president for students at the Harvard School of Public Health, the City University of New York Medical School and the City College of New York.

    About Morehouse School of Medicine
    Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM) recruits and trains minority and other students as physicians, biomedical scientists and public health professionals committed to improving the health and well-being of communities. MSM is a member of the largest consortium of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in the world — the Atlanta University Center (AUC). For more information about Morehouse School of Medicine, visit us online at