MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Student researchers from the various West Virginia University Health Sciences programs along with residents, faculty, postdoctoral students and clinical fellows will join together during a two-part event at the Health Sciences Center this week. The 2011 E.J. Van Liere Memorial Convocation and Research Day will highlight research work done by students and feature a guest speaker.

The first portion of the event, which begins on Friday, March 11, culminates months of research and work done by students in the schools of Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing and Pharmacy. Students’ research will be displayed in a poster-viewing session allowing staff members, faculty and peers to discuss work being done at the HSC. The poster session will be held in the Ruby Grand Hall of the Erickson Alumni Center.    

“We invite HSC employees and the WVU and Morgantown communities to engage in lively scientific discussions at the Van Liere Convocation and Research Day. This day highlights the research of our students, residents, fellows and faculty in a setting much like a national scientific meeting,” Fred Minnear, Ph.D., assistant vice president for graduate education, said.

Not only does the Van Liere event allow students to engage in competitive research, but it also affords them a chance to learn from an established member of the medical research community. At 1 p.m., after the research poster session, Kenneth Chien, M.D., Ph.D., professor of cell biology at Harvard Medical School, will present “How to Make a Heart: Towards Heart Stem Cell Therapeutics” in the Fukushima Auditorium.  

Chien is the scientific director of the Cardiovascular Research Center at Massachusetts General Hospital. He is also a member of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute. His research has focused on cardiovascular stem cells used to achieve heart muscle regeneration.

After the lecture, from 2 to 4:30 p.m., the event will wind down with the Van Liere Memorial Convocation during which students will give presentations on their work. The day will conclude with an award ceremony at 5 p.m. Both the convocation and the award ceremony will be held in the Fukushima Auditorium.

The event is named after Edward J. Van Liere, M.D., who was critical in the creation of the medical program at WVU. Called the “father of the WVU Medical Center,” Dr. Van Liere was professor and chair of physiology before he became dean of the School of Medicine in 1937. He developed the two-year medical school into a four-year accredited program.

For more information on the 2011 E.J. Van Liere Memorial Convocation and Research Day see

For more information: Amy Johns, HSC News Service, 304-293-7087
jy: 03-04-11