Best-selling writer and adventurist Aron Ralston, inspiration for the movie “127 Hours,” will speak at the 2011 Montana State University freshman convocation set for 7 p.m. Sept. 7 at MSU’s Brick Breeden Fieldhouse. The event is free and open to the public.

Ralston’s book, “Between a Rock and a Hard Place,” was selected as MSU’s summer reading book for freshmen. “Between a Rock and a Hard Place” was also chosen as the main selection for the Bozeman Public Library’s One Book-One Bozeman.

In 2003 Ralston’s story made headlines worldwide. After being pinned by a half-ton boulder for nearly a week in a remote three-foot-wide slot canyon in southern Utah, Ralston narrowly escaped death by severing his right forearm with a dull pocketknife. After applying a tourniquet, he hiked and rappelled for five hours through Blue John Canyon before searchers rescued him. Ralston documented the experience and his will to survive in his New York Times best-selling book, “Between a Rock and a Hard Place.” Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle adapted the book into the film, “127 Hours,” which was nominated for the Academy Awards’ Best Picture.

Ralston graduated as Carnegie Mellon University’s top student in mechanical engineering in 1997. He left his job as a mechanical engineer with Intel in 2002 to follow his passion for outdoor adventures in Colorado. Aided by radical prosthetic devices that he helped design, Ralston has expanded his adventures to the world’s great peaks, deserts and rivers. He is the only person to have solo climbed all 59 of Colorado’s 14,000-foot-high mountains in winter and the only person with a disability to have skied from the summit of Denali, North America’s tallest mountain.

In addition, “127 Hours” will be shown at MSU’s Procrastinator Theater Sept 1-13, excluding Sept. 7, at 6:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Tickets are $2 for the general public with the exception of the 9 p.m. viewing on Thursdays, Sept. 2 and 9, when tickets are $1.

-MSU Wire Services