Neuroscience receives grant for Butterfield Hall

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By Rachel Cox

The Neuroscience department has recently been awarded $900,000 by the National Science Foundation, which is part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

The grant will expand the neuroscience department and move it to the third floor of Butterfield Hall.

This funding will allow for more space to be dedicated to the faculty and students who partake in Neuroscience research and research training.

“The renovations to Butterfield will bring together core faculty from biology, psychology and bioengineering to interact more freely and provide additional research opportunities for faculty and students,” project leader Associate Professor of Psychology Stephen Romero said. The new center will include five research laboratories, space for student and faculty interaction, and research training areas.

The center will help maintain research and training in studies such as neuroplasticity, human cognitive abilities, and basic molecular mechanisms underlying pediatric neurological disorders.

“I am very pleased about the developments,” Romero said. “The grant will provide not only much needed space for the program and help create identity for neuroscience students; the award of this grant from a highly competitive national program provides strong external validation that the neuroscience curriculum and research at Union College are amongst the best in the country.”

In the winter of 2007, the first two floors of Butterfield Hall were renovated to accommodate the Center for Bioengineering and Computational Biology.

The project will be an overall benefit to Union.

“Positioning research labs adjacent to teaching space offers the additional benefit of allowing the teaching lab to be used by student and faculty research during times when classes are not in session and is important to training the next generation of researchers,” Romero said.

Faculty and students can expect renovations to begin early next year and to be completed by the fall.

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