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The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Officials breaking research grounds

[media-credit name=’JAKE NAUGHTON/Herald photo’ align=’alignright’ width=’336′]Discovery_Jump_JN[/media-credit]

Corporate and public sector representatives broke ground
Friday for the new Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery on University Avenue.

Gov. Jim Doyle, University of Wisconsin Chancellor John
Wiley, UW alumni John and Tasha Morgridge and executive members from the
Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation attended the ceremony.


The Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery was made possible by
a $50 million gift from the Morgridges, matched by $50 million from the state
and $50 million from WARF.

The event also marked Wiley’s final groundbreaking as
chancellor. Wiley said he is proud to have his last ceremony to be for the
“most impressive building on our campus, and perhaps on campuses around
the world.”

The Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, situated on the 1300
block of University Avenue, will be used to promote collaboration between
private and publicly funded research.

The twin research institutions housed within the Wisconsin
Institutes for Discovery building will be the privately run Morgridge Institute
for Research and the public Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery.

Carl Gulbrandsen, WARF managing director, said in this case
“the sum is greater than the parts,” leading to “enormously rich
resources” for research endeavors.

“It combines the best of the public with the best of
the private,” Gulbrandsen added.

The institution will be used to combine nanotechnology,
biology, engineering, information technology and other disciplines to promote
research in the state, with the flexibility of private funding.

Marsha Mailick-Seltzer, interim director of the future
Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery and current director of UW’s Waisman Center,
said the power of collaboration would promote the “finest teaching and
research opportunities.”

“When smart people from different fields come together,
exciting things happen,” Mailick-Seltzer added.

Doyle said the growing field of biotechnology is an
important key to the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, and the Morgridge
Institute for Research offers exciting economic rewards for Wisconsin.
According to Doyle, biotechnology is a $500 billion industry.

“It will fire Wisconsin’s economy and push us toward
our goal of holding 10 percent of the market by 2015,” Doyle said.

In addition to helping fund the reconstruction of the Red
Gym and numerous other projects on the UW campus, the Morgridges’ donation to
the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery is the “largest single gift ever
given to the university,” Gulbrandsen said.

John Morgridge stressed the importance of public and private
collaboration, and the importance of good information transfer between research

The institutes will stimulate research, as the industry is
competitive by nature, Morgridge added.

Tashia Morgridge also spoke about the project, emphasizing
its importance to education.

“The multi-story teaching and laboratory facility will
expose students to world-class thinking and learning,” she said.

The Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery and the Morgridge
Institute for Research are expected to open their doors in 2010.

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