UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Aron Ralston, the climber and outdoorsman that inspired the film “127 Hours,” is the final speaker in Penn State’s 2011-12 Student Programming Association’s Distinguished Speaker Series. Ralston will speak at 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 5, in Eisenhower Auditorium at Penn State’s University Park Campus.
Ralston was descending a remote Utah canyon alone when an 800-pound boulder broke loose, crushing his right hand and pinning him against the canyon wall. After nearly five days without water and with no hope of escape, Ralston made a life-or-death decision. He chose life by severing his arm below the elbow, rappelling a 65-foot cliff out of the canyon and trekking seven miles to find his would-be rescuers.
Ralston documented his life-altering experience in the New York Times best-selling memoir, “Between a Rock and a Hard Place,” which was adapted for the big screen. The film stars James Franco as Ralston, and his performance, as well as the movie, have been nominated for numerous awards. Now an inspirational speaker, Ralston talks about the human capacity for the extraordinary.
The event is free and open to the public but tickets are required for admittance. Tickets are now available to students -- two issued per I.D. -- and will be available to faculty, staff and the general public Thursday, March 29, based on availability.
Distinguished Speaker Series tickets are available at the following locations and times: Eisenhower Auditorium, corner of Shortlidge and Eisenhower roads, weekdays 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; HUB-Robeson Center, on Pollock Road, weekdays 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Bryce Jordan Center, corner of University Drive and Curtin Road, weekdays 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., all on the University Park campus; and the Penn State Downtown Theatre Center, 146 S. Allen St., State College, weekdays 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturdays 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
For more information about the Distinguished Speaker Series and the Student Programming Association, visit http://spa.psu.edu/events/dss.html.