Wednesday, 20 of August of 2014

Learning in the lab New life sciences research facilities enable students to learn through research projects

The completion of a major expansion and upgrade of the laboratory facilities in the College of Arts and Sciences has opened up new research opportunities for the faculty. It has also created new hands-on experiences that will better prepare Lawrence Tech undergraduate students for medical school, graduate school, and careers in the healthcare field.

That’s because working side by side with a professor engaged in basic life sciences research is one of the best ways to gain a deeper knowledge of the scientific principles that guide medical care, according to Dean Hsiao-Ping Moore of the College of Arts and Sciences.

“I firmly believe that the best way to teach students cognitive skills, analytical skills, creativity, and critical thinking is through research,” Moore said. “In the sciences there is no substitute.”

A major breakthrough was achieved in 2010 when the National Sciences Foundation awarded a $1,342,276 grant for a next-generation life sciences research facility to include a molecular and cell biology research lab, a chemical biology lab, an instrumentation room, a walk-in cold room, and a room for preparing testing materials and equipment.
Lawrence Tech’s grant was three to four times larger than the typical NSF grant. More than 1,500 universities and colleges filed letters of intent for a round of funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and less than 10 percent were successful.

On Oct. 1, the College of Arts and Sciences celebrated Homecoming with not just one ribbon-cutting ceremony but five to mark the completion of the new and upgraded research facilities.

As a result of the NSF grant, Lawrence Tech now has laboratory facilities for undergraduates that are typically found in medical schools and graduate school programs.