The NIH Director’s Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series, colloquially known as WALS, is the highest-profile lecture program at the NIH. Traditionally, lectures have occurred on most Wednesdays from September through June from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. ET in Masur Auditorium, Building 10 on the NIH Bethesda campus.
**Important: For the 2023–2024 season, the WALS has moved to Lipsett Amphitheater with the new time for almost all lectures being 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. ET.**
Each season includes some of the biggest names in biomedical and behavioral research. The goal of the WALS is to keep NIH researchers abreast of the latest and most important research in the United States and beyond. An added treat is the annual J. Edward Rall Cultural Lecture, which features top authors and other cultural icons. All speakers are nominated by the NIH community.
The WALS began in 1994 as a means to bring together the NIH staff at a set time weekly. “I am very pleased that the NIH now has a regular slot for an outstanding outside speaker each week,” said Dr. Harold Varmus, then recently named NIH Director in 1994. “We are all slaves to our schedules and creatures of habit, so I am glad to be able to block out Wednesdays at 3 p.m. for the coming academic year to listen to the wonderful people who have agreed to tell us about their latest work.”
Consider setting aside your Wednesdays for the WALS.
SIgn up for the WALS listserv to receive notices about each lecture.
We hold approximately 35 lectures per year, which includes these named lectures:
- NIH Director’s Lecture
- Rolla E. Dyer Lecture
- G. Burroughs Mider Lecture
- Marshall W. Nirenberg Lecture
- Margaret Pittman Lecture
- J. Edward Rall Cultural Lecture
- Astute Clinician Lecture
- Robert S. Gordon Jr. Lecture
- George Khoury Lecture
- Florence Mahoney Lecture on Aging
- DeWitt Stetten Jr. Lecture
- William E. Paul Lecture
This page was last updated on Thursday, July 6, 2023