Transformation of Moulton Hall Yields State-of-Art Labs and Classrooms
Imagine having the opportunity to learn Level 3 biocontainment techniques as an undergraduate. It’s now a possibility thanks to the renovation of space in Moulton Hall into classrooms and research labs.
“We now have the space to offer the National Institutes of Health Biosafety Biocontainment Training Program,” explained Christopher Woolverton, PhD (Professor, Environmental Health Sciences and Kent City Health Department board member). “Students from Kent and all over the world, including National Institutes of Health fellows, can work within high containment conditions in these labs on Level 3 simulations. It allows us to teach techniques that we would be unable to teach outside of this particular lab environment. We can benefit the community with training opportunities as well.” When not working on training initiatives, Woolverton studies decontamination strategies, and is also involved in a pilot program involving group internships for CPH students. The idea, generated by a CPH Public Health Ambassador, identifies projects that simulate true working environments on which teams of four CPH students can work.
The labs and classrooms are shared by Woolverton and his colleague, Tara Smith, PhD (Professor, Epidemiology). Among other pandemic diseases, Smith studies Staphylococcus aureus. In 2016, she participated with Mark Dalman, PhD (Assistant Professor, College of Podiatric Medicine) in a study of the presence of Staph aureus in identical twins at Twins Days in Twinsburg, Ohio.
In addition to the research labs, the renovation created two new classrooms that are equipped for teaching both lab and non-lab courses. Overall, the new facility gives CPH students a more robust experience in determining ways to practice the techniques that protect the public’s health.