As the most comprehensive public research university in one of the nation’s largest, most dynamic regions, UNT offers its students knowledge and opportunity — drawing dedicated faculty researchers and mentors, building industry partnerships and providing world-class facilities, including one of the largest university aquatics labs in the nation (above). The 2012 UNT Research magazine, out in March, features the latest in UNT science, scholarship and the arts as the university works toward its goal of achieving status among the nation’s tier-one research universities.
“We’ve made significant progress,” UNT President V. Lane Rawlins says. “We’re focused on doing everything at the highest level to provide an education and to conduct research and scholarship on par with the nation’s elite research institutions.”
UNT’s expertise in environmental science began with the water quality studies of biologist J.K.G. Silvey in the 1930s. Faculty and students who continue to build on that water research legacy today include researchers in the Institute of Applied Science and in disciplines as diverse as English, philosophy and film. Whether studying the effects of chemicals on the aquatic food chain or documenting the ways in which different cultures impact the world’s rivers, UNT researchers are working to understand and protect this valuable resource.
Many students have benefited from UNT’s research-driven environment at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Under the direction of faculty mentors in biology and chemistry, biochemistry doctoral student Patrick Horn became one of the first researchers to create a chemical map of plant cell components that will enable other scientists to analyze the lipid composition of plants in greater detail. His work, which could help improve human health as well as agricultural productivity, is drawing attention from biologists across the nation interested in applying the research in their own studies.
Since 2007, UNT has been home to the Net-Centric Software and Systems Center, a National Science Foundation Industry/University Cooperative Research Center in computer science. Now, UNT’s strengths in materials science have brought two new I/UCRC sites to campus, providing industry partners and opportunities for student research.