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For Immediate Release

Colom Named Vice President for Research

BROWNSVILLE, TX – DECEMBER 17, 2009 – Dr. Luis V. Colom has been named the first vice president for Research for The University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College.

Colom began serving as the interim vice president for Research in March 2009 and took on the role permanently after a nationwide search.

“Dr. Colom has a proven track record in working and inspiring both students and faculty,” said UTB/TSC Provost Dr. Alan Artibise. “Through discipline, diplomacy, talent, and most of all, hard work, he has helped his colleagues work together to create one of the most vibrant departments on campus. He has also played a leadership role in our infrastructure for compliance to meet increasing external demands for accountability in biology and biomedical studies.”

Colom said the goal for the new division of Research will serve to expand and support the university’s programs by promoting research, scholarly, creative and collaborative activities of the faculty, staff and students at UTB/TSC.

“In the future, we will encourage national and international partnerships for research development, develop and promote research workforce training and commercialization of research endeavors, enhance the research infrastructure of the university, and provide a research environment that encourages the timely completion of graduate degrees with an educational experience of national and international excellence.  Through these efforts, I anticipate extraordinary growth, expanding current research efforts into many new relevant research areas.”

Colom joined UTB/TSC as a faculty member in 2001and since his arrival he has been recognized for his achievements in conducting research, growing the Department of Biological Sciences, and directing the development of the Center for Biomedical Studies. During his time on campus, he has also served as the director for Biomedical Studies and has played a leadership role in this field both nationally and internationally.

“It is an honor to be able to work in Dr. Colom's laboratory,” said Ivan Valdez, a biology major who works in Colom’s laboratories. “He is truly a dedicated scientist and a leader in whatever it is that he endeavors."

Under Colom’s leadership, Valdez, along with classmate Herminio Guajardo, were two of six students nationwide that were chosen from a national pool of applicants to intern at the Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences in New York City.

“Dr. Colom has a passion for science. We can see in his face when he is talking about science and research,” Guajardo said. “He has taught me the importance of research in order to find possible treatments of neurological illnesses such as Alzheimer's disease or epilepsy. He is a great mentor.”

Colom received his medical and doctoral degrees in his native country, Uruguay, and has done extensive research training in Spain, Canada, and Baylor College of Medicine, which serves as testament to his lifelong dedication to the pursuit of new knowledge through high-quality research. His research interests in Alzheimer’s disease and epilepsy have attracted more than $12 million in grants.




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