ELKINS - An equipment upgrade is on the way for the Davis & Elkins College biology lab. The College recently was awarded a $20,000 grant and will match the remainder of funds to purchase 26 advanced feature microscopes.
Dr. Michelle Mabry, associate professor and chair of the Biology and Environmental Science Department, received the Instrumentation Grant from Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR), an initiative of the National Science Foundation.
The equipment will arrive and be installed this summer.
The new microscopes will have built-in digital imaging which will allow the students to take pictures of their specimens, and imaging software capable of analyzing the images.
The devices are equipped with fluorescent lights making them more energy efficient than the ones with incandescent lights that students currently use.
Mabry says all biology students, including those taking classes in microbiology, zoology and botany, will use the new microscopes.
“Microscopy is a foundational skill in biology, and the digital imaging microscopes will allow students to analyze the images as they have not been able to before. We can also build a library of images that students can refer to in the lab,” Mabry says.
EPSCoR is intended to expand and enhance the research capability of scientists in states that traditionally have lacked strong university-based research efforts, to help them to compete more successfully for a portion of the federal academic research and development budget.
Related to the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Davis & Elkins College is located in Elkins, 2 hours east of Charleston, 3 hours south of Pittsburgh and 4 hours west of Washington, D.C. For more information, please visit the College website at www.dewv.edu or call 304-637-1243.