Baliga Lab Receives Two MJ Murdock Awards

The Baliga Lab at the Institute for Systems Biology (ISB) is the winner of two grants in the amounts of $15,000 each from the MJ Murdock Charitable Trust for its 2013 Partners In Science Program.

Each of these two year grants will enable two high school teachers to collaborate with scientists in conducting research projects in ISB‘s laboratories.   ISB’s faculty and research scientists will work in tandem with the teachers and mentor them as they conduct their respective projects.
The mission of the MJ Murdock Charitable Trust is to enhance teachers’ experience as researchers and to hone their skills in using laboratory equipment and experimental protocols. The goal is to transfer this understanding to their science students and awaken a passion for science.  The teachers who participate in these grants will implement plans for facilitating future student-teacher-institution collaborations, thereby furthering science education programs.  The teachers will also contribute to the publication of their research results.
We are pleased to announce that Jennifer Duncan-Taylor of Port Angeles High School in Port Angeles, WA and Tamara Caraballo of Glacier Peak High School in Snohomish, WA are the two high school teachers ISB will be working with.  Jennifer Duncan-Taylor’s research will utilize a systems biology approach to characterize diatom response to ocean acidification, climate change and nitrogen availability.  Tamara Caraballo’s area of study will entail employing systems models to accurately predict the biological consequences of sequence variation and small 3D structural changes in proteins.  ISBers Nitin Baliga,Justin Ashworth, Christopher Lausted, Monica Orellana and Claudia Ludwig will work with these talented teachers.
These MJ Murdock Partners in Science Program awards will help each of these high school teachers further their laboratory bench skills and learn new protocols and technologies as classroom lab teachers.  ISB’s partnering with them will allow ISB to extend its research and further communicate its science.  We are excited about this mutually beneficial collaboration and experience!