Hood College Receives almost $2 Million Endowment for Biofuels Professor
by Allen Etzler (Frederick News Post) A near $2 million endowment will be used to help Hood College continue developing its biology department and build collaborations with the biotech industry.
The college recently received $944,000 under a matching endowment for the “Endowed Chair in Advanced Bioproducts Research and Education” from the Maryland Department of Commerce.
The Hodson Trust matched the $944,000 to make it a total $1.8 million endowment. The trust, according to its website, was set up by the descendants of Col. Clarence Hodson, an early Maryland pioneer, to benefit four private Maryland colleges: Hood, St. John’s in Annapolis, Johns Hopkins in Baltimore and Washington College in Chestertown.
With the endowment, the college plans to hire a professor with expertise in biofuels research.
Frederick County has the second highest number of biomedical companies in the state. Although biofuels and biomed are technically different fields, many of the techniques used in biofuels carry over to biomed research, said Craig Laufer, Hood College professor of biology and co-director of the Honors Program.
Building Hood’s biology department would allow the college to build relationships with the biotech companies, such as those that do work for federal institutions on Fort Detrick.
“We’re trying to collaborate more with other institutions more often and strengthen those relationships,” Laufer said. “That’s exactly what we had in mind in getting this grant.”
Another benefit the biofuels professor brings to the school is the opportunity to tie its biology Master’s programs together. READ MORE