My trip to Maryland University

Date: November 1, 2010

  Department of Biological Science and Technology,  College of Life Sciences, Student, Yu-Ting Shia
Editor, General Education Center, Associate Professor Beryl Ching-Hwa Lee

The Introduction of Maryland University, College park
The University of Maryland, College Park (often referred to as The University of Maryland, UM, UMD, UMCP, or Maryland) is a public research university located in the city of College Park in Prince George's County, Maryland, just outside Washington, D.C. Founded in 1856, the University of Maryland is the flagship institution of the University System of Maryland. With a fall 2009 enrollment of 37,000 students, Maryland is the largest university in the state and the largest in the Washington Metropolitan Area. It is a member of the Association of American Universities and a founding member of the Atlantic Coast Conference athletic league.

The University of Maryland's proximity to the nation's capital has resulted in strong research partnerships with the Federal government. Many members of the faculty receive research funding and institutional support from agencies such as the National Institutes of Health, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the Department of Homeland Security.
I am a junior of China Medical University, and my major is biological science and technology. When I heard that there was a chance to go aboard for research and study, I decided I should take this activity into consideration. The reasons are as follows. My cousin had participated in a similar activity in the previous year. He had shared his learning experience and life in the USA with me, which interested me to a great extent. In addition, I hope to travel around the world someday and experience different culture and landscape. Moreover, I have learned English for ten years and I have been interested in learning and using English.

Although this research and study activity sounds intimidating, it attracts me. At first, I didn’t have confidence in myself and I didn’t think I would not perform well at the interview. But my mom encouraged me to participate in the activity and said if I really wanted to go aboard for research and academic study, I needed to give it a try. So I started to prepare for application and interview. Fortunately, I got the chance and I had high expectation to learn from the activity.  
Course: Food biotechnology
Director: Dr. Martin Lo
Major topics and schedule of lectures
July 12 Introduction, Review Syllabus; Review University Resources
July 13 General overview of food biotechnology
July 14 Tools of the trade: Characteristics of biological elements
July 15 Gene cloning and production of recombinant proteins
July 16 Plant biotechnology
July 19 Field trip: MedImmune in Gaithersburg, MD
July 20 Field trip: Maryland Biotechnology Institute in Baltimore, MD
July 21 Animal biotechnology
July 22 Diagnostic systems for detection of microbes
July 23 Cell culture and Food
July 26 Industrial Cell culture (scale up); Visit Bioprocessing facility
July 27 Ethics, Safety and Regulation
July 28 Presentations
July 29 Final Exam

Department of Biological Science and Technology, College of Life Sciences, Yu-Ting Shia

The content of lectures and field trips
The subject of course is about food biotechnology, including how to develop food by combining food science and biotechnology. Though I have studied biotechnology in Taiwan, there is much knowledge of food science and technology that I have not learned yet. Under this circumstance, we benefited a lot from Dr. Lo when he introduced to us bioluminescence sensors, DNA recombinant technology, cell biology, biochemistry, transgenic plants and animals, the controversial issue about GMO.

Dr. Lo also introduced his environmental factory, and explained how to use those machines in detail. There are many interesting and useful machines that I have ever seen. In addition, we visited other professors’ lab and nanocenter in UM, and we visited a company, MedImmune, in Gaithersburg during our field trip.

We had a quiz every day, so after class I reviewed the lessons immediately. Due to the pressure from the tests, we classmates had a lot of discussion with each other. On this account, we learned more as we developed our thinking ability and the tolerance of different opinions during the discussion.

(Chinese Version.)


The researcher in nanocenter introduced the FABLAB
Lab in Maryland University
Group photo with Dr. Lo (right)
I got the certificate of diploma