The University of Nebraska Board of Regents focused on campus academic programs and research initiatives during a Jan. 24 tour of the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.
The visit was part of the NU Regents’ annual tour of each campus in the University of Nebraska system. The visits allow faculty and administrators at each institution to showcase campus programs face-to-face with the regents, answering questions and helping increase understanding of important campus initiatives.
“These visits are extraordinarily important for us to engage with and learn about key campus programs and strategic research initiatives being led by faculty and students,” said Tim Clare, District 1 Regent and vice chairman of the board. “This is very necessary engagement that allows us to establish relationships with groundbreaking faculty and see how they are impacting the state and the state economy.”
Areas of focus in the tour included the College of Business; research leadership in materials science, nanoscience, high energy and laser physics; College of Engineering expansion; Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts; animal life sciences research hub; veterinary diagnostic center; Nebraska Food for Health Center; and Nebraska Virology Center.
“For me, this day helps add some color and meaning to all the numbers we see as a board,” said Elizabeth O’Connor, a newly-elected regent representing District 4. “It’s a tremendous opportunity see firsthand all the energy on campus and visions on where the colleges are going.”
The regents also toured Nebraska Innovation Campus, visiting the new home of Virtual Incision in the recently opened Rise Building. Virtual Incision is a faculty spinoff developing next-generation, miniaturized surgical robots used to minimize recovery times and costs associated with abdominal surgeries, particularly colon resections. It was launched by Shane Farritor, professor of mechanical and materials engineering at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, and Dmitry Oleynikov, a surgeon at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.
Presentations through the day included Dean Lance C. Pérez discussing future facility upgrades and goals for the College of Engineering.
“Talking with deans today has been extremely important and provides necessary background as we, as a board, do our job for all of Nebraska,” O’Connor said. “Pretty much everything I’ve seen today has been exciting. It’s been a wonderful opportunity to see what is going on at UNL and how the university is working to better the future.”