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UI program forges statewide research network
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Starting this week, faculty and students from five Iowa colleges will become the newest members of a growing network of scientists and science educators who are focused on strengthening research ties and science education throughout the state.
The network is the result of the FUTURE (Fostering Undergraduate Talent—Uniting Research and Education) in Biomedicine program based at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine. The program, now in its fourth year, brings faculty and students from primarily undergraduate Iowa colleges to spend the summer doing research in collaboration with UI Carver College of Medicine scientists.
A major goal of the program is to use these eight-week research projects as a starting point for long-term research partnerships between faculty from the UI and professors and students from Iowa colleges. These partnerships, and the network created through them, help strengthen the science education infrastructure statewide and create opportunities for Iowa researchers to share know-how and enhance their students' educational experiences.
"As always, we are really excited to be starting this summer's FUTURE program. Everyone is looking forward to collaborating on new research and enthusiastic about the opportunity to learn and discover together," says Madeline Shea, professor of biochemistry and director of the FUTURE program. "The success of the program is clearly demonstrated by the numerous ongoing collaborations between our faculty and alumni of the program, many of whom will return this summer to participate in 2012 FUTURE events, and by the fact that undergraduates who have participated now are graduate students and medical students at top research universities, including the UI."
Shea notes that in addition to strengthening established ties—two colleges are participating for the third time—the FUTURE program continues to expand its reach. This year, three colleges are participating for the first time, including the first community college to send a FUTURE fellow and student to the UI.
The colleges represented are Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Drake University in Des Moines, Dordt College in Sioux Center, Hawkeye Community College in Waterloo, and Simpson College in Indianola.
To learn more about this year's participants and the program, visit www.healthcare.uiowa.edu/futurebiomedicine.