Jennifer Wiseman – woman of faith and science

Jennifer Wiseman USA

Dr. Jennifer Wiseman is a senior astrophysicist at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, where she serves as the Senior Project Scientist for the Hubble Space Telescope. She previously headed the Laboratory for Exoplanets and Stellar Astrophysics. She studies star forming regions of our galaxy using radio, optical, and infrared telescopes, with a particular interest in molecular cloud cores, protostars, and outflows.

Director of the AAAS Dialogue on Science, Ethics, and Religion (DoSER) program. Dr. Wiseman studied physics for her bachelor’s degree at MIT, discovering comet Wiseman-Skiff in 1987.

After earning her Ph.D. in astronomy from Harvard University in 1995, she continued her research at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory and Johns Hopkins University.

Dr. Wiseman also has an interest in national science policy and has served as an American Physical Society Congressional Science Fellow on Capitol Hill. She is also a public speaker and author, and enjoys giving talks on the excitement of science and astronomy to schools, youth and church groups, and civic organizations. She is a Councilor of the American Astronomical Society and a former President of the American Scientific Affiliation.

On the divide between seminary training and scientific knowledge she said:

“AAAS is committed to the idea that scientific advancements must benefit society, and we believe that integrating modern scientific advancements into seminary education will benefit professors, students, and ultimately those in the pews who often appreciate and struggle with the discoveries and implications of science. While clergy need not become professional scientists, a study on the Book of Genesis, for example, could be enhanced by conversations on our incredible evolving universe, the findings and accuracy of radiometric dating and genome mapping, and responsible earth stewardship in light of climate change realities. As scientists continue to investigate the complexities of the human brain and genetic programming, religious communities must grapple with what this information says about our origins, consciousness, behavior, and free will. Mood-altering drugs and surgeries for personality disorders are becoming more pervasive, compelling people to explore who they are and who they are meant to be. And complex ethical choices regarding personal medical care or even national policy call on the wise counsel of trusted and well-informed religious leaders. By integrating science into the core training of these leaders, AAAS and its partnering schools are enabling seminaries and religious congregations to build atmospheres that promote informed dialogue and a positive understanding of science.”


As a Christian, I conclude that humankind is significant, not only because of the sustainability of life on Earth, but also because, through Jesus Christ, God has revealed his willingness to have a relationship with us.


One thought on “Jennifer Wiseman – woman of faith and science

  1. I would LOVE to see that.
    But not just evolutionary science, throw in, and let students decide for themselves which interpretive frameworks make more sense of the same scientific data.
    We do that with theology, exposing them to both liberal and conservative views.
    I agree that interpreting science 101 (+) is a core subject for modern day theology.
    It is one of the subjects I found I simply HAD to learn post college.

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