RUSTON, La - The Institute for Micromanufacturing (IfM) at Louisiana Tech University and the Center for Biomedical Engineering and Rehabilitation Science (CBERS) have joined forces to offer faculty fellowships that promote interdisciplinary collaboration between IfM and CBERS faculty and colleagues in other areas, particularly in the arts.
The idea was presented by Dr. Yuri Lvov, professor of micro and nanosystems, one of the IfM's most prominent scientists, and a world-wide leader in nanotechnology.
"While taking philosophy class at Moscow State University, our professor gave us a problem which we discussed with great enthusiasm: 'Why is it that scientific and technological achievements of two to three hundred years look rather outdated while one-hundred year old pieces of art (pictures, music, poetry) are perfect? Can artists catch something ingenious which is unavailable to a rational mind? What is this genius? Could scientists and engineers learn from their inspiration?'"
The result is a fellowship designed to promote broad interdisciplinary collaboration of science and engineering with the arts, humanities and social and behavioral sciences faculty at Louisiana Tech and stimulate productivity of faculty in all fields by broadening the understanding of the interactions of technology and society.
IfM has already named Marie Bukowski, associate professor of art at Louisiana Tech, as the first IfM/CBERS Fellow. Bukowski holds a Masters of Fine Arts from the University of Pennsylvania, a Certificate of Polish Language and Art History from Jagiellonian University, and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Carnegie Mellon University.
In her first presentation to the faculty and staff of the research centers on Feb. 5, Bukowski explained and illustrated why "Science Needs the Arts," using historical and personal artistic productions.
She said, "the role of artists is unique and evolving, frequently reflecting on current issues, challenging societal restrictions and mores, sometimes creating beauty and order, sometimes demonstrating the inherent chaos of contemporary life, addressing government decisions and asking philosophical questions. Artists have been visionaries, provocateurs, and iconoclasts, sometimes praised for their ability to conceptualize the future, and other times chastised for breaking with the norm".
The fellowship is for a six month period. The fellows are expected to make a presentation to introduce themselves and their work to the IfM/CBERS community at the beginning of their six months. A presentation is also expected at the end of the six months to show-case the accomplishments that resulted from the fellowship.
The Institute for Micromanufacturing (IfM) at Louisiana Tech University is an integrated nanomanufacturing and micromanufacturing center, dedicated to micro/nano scale technologies and systems research, education, and commercialization. IfM is a world-class resource for the realization of commercially viable micro- and nanosystems, contributing to the economic infrastructure of Louisiana and the nation and benefiting humanity as a whole.