Congratulations to NIMBioS Director Louis Gross who will lead the Biology Ideas Lab for the National Science Foundation, March 30-April 4, in Leesburg, Va.
Three five-day NSF Ideas Labs —one for biology, one for engineering and one for geosciences—are being held this month through April 4 in the Washington, D.C., area. Each lab involves participants from various disciplines and backgrounds, as well as prospective employers and representatives of scientific and professional societies. The goals of the labs are to incubate innovative approaches to improve undergraduate STEM education and produce research agendas that address workforce development needs.
“A well-prepared and innovative STEM workforce is critical to our nation’s health and economy,” said Gross, also a professor of ecology and evolutionary biology and mathematics at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. “NSF’s priorities of educating students to become leaders and innovators in STEM fields and of encouraging the public to be scientifically literate depend on the quality of undergraduate education.”
The biology lab aims to improve quantitative and computational skill sets of the future biological science workforce. The engineering lab will look at ways to develop a more diverse workforce. The geosciences lab seeks to improve access to related education.
“These labs will be intensive, engaging and free-thinking so that the participants are able to fully immerse themselves in the dialogue in order to come up with novel and bold approaches,” said Gross, whose role as director will be to help define topics and aid discussions at the event.