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Center for Student Research in the Life Sciences

The Center for Student Research in the Life Sciences (CSRLS) grew from the success of the Center of Biotechnology and Biomedical Sciences.  It is a Center dedicated to undergraduate research under the mentorship of our faculty.  The Center is an integral part of learning and exploration in the Department of Biology.

The Center for Biotechnology and Biomedical Sciences grew from the success of the Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, and Integrative Physiology concentrations leading to a B.S. degree in the Department of Biology at Merrimack College

Undergraduate Study

The Center for Student Research in the Life Sciences (CSRLS) continues to enhance the undergraduate experience through innovative curricular and co-curricular activities.

Some of the Highlights of the brief history of the CSRLS are the establishment of a Biotechnology/Biomedical Sciences Advisory Board with distinguished members from both industry and academia; the renovation of lab space in Mendel Science Center; the acquisition of a major gift donation of lab equipment from Wyeth to support student/faculty research in the program; the procurement of student internship opportunities for several Merrimack Biology majors at area companies; the inauguration of a Seminar Series in Biotechnology and Biomedical Sciences; and membership in the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council.

The Sailfin Molly DNA sequencing project was initiated in the spring of 2010. Students in the BIO2018 Genetics course participated directly in this project which aims to create a series of polymorphic markers to support the work of Department of Biology faculty member Dave MacLaren, Ph.D., in his research on the evolution of courtship behavior.

Several key features contribute to the ongoing success of our undergraduate curriculum:

  • A comprehensive, interdisciplinary curriculum offering breadth and depth of study in cellular and molecular biology, biotechnology, genetics, organismal biology, ecology, and environmental biology
  • Dedicated Faculty with demonstrated accomplishment in teaching, scientific research, and service to the Merrimack College community
  • Faculty committed to close mentoring relationships with students - in the classroom and laboratories, and as advisors for career development
  • High quality curricular and co-curricular opportunities for students
  • Many alumni from professional degree programs at leading academic institutions such as Cornell, Georgetown, Tufts, and Johns Hopkins Universities
  • Many other alumni who have obtained direct entry in the life sciences workforce

The CSRLS promotes student/faculty research, interdisciplinary initiatives in the curriculum, community outreach programs and corporate partnerships.  The CSRLS occupies a suite in the Mendel Science Center on the campus of Merrimack College.

For more information, please contact:  

Mark Birnbaum, Ph.D.    
Director, Center for Student Research in the Life Sciences
birnbaumm@merrimack.edu 
(978) 837-5276