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Center for Immunology names new director

Marc Jenkins, Ph.D., has been named director for the University of Minnesota’s Center for Immunology. He will assume the role on March 1, 2013. The appointment is a three-year position.

Jenkins has been a member of the Center for Immunology since it was founded in 1995 and currently serves as its associate director. He has been a researcher at the University of Minnesota since 1988.

Currently, Jenkins is a Distinguished McKnight University Professor in the Department of Microbiology. He is also a former director of graduate studies for the Microbiology, Immunology, and Cancer Biology Ph.D. Program. Jenkins is a Pew Scholar, NIH Merit Award holder, and has been inducted into the Academic Health Center’s Academy for Excellence in Health Research.

Jenkins is quick to acknowledge the work of outgoing director Matthew Mescher, Ph.D., whose leadership has given the University of Minnesota’s Center for Immunology a sturdy foundation.

“Getting a great reputation is hard-fought. I feel like our reputation right now is good, and I’d like to take it to top in the world,” says Jenkins.

The Center for Immunology currently consists of almost 60 members, with 15 of those researchers working in dedicated laboratory facilities at the Wallin Medical Biosciences Building, part of the Biomedical Discovery District. Center members come from the Medical School departments of Microbiology, Lab Medicine and Pathology, Pediatrics, Medicine, and Dermatology. Three of the eight NIH Merit Award holders in the Medical School are members of the center.

As Jenkins sees it, the next step is to continue to increase the national visibility of the research accomplishments of the center’s members with the goal of recruiting additional leaders in the field.

We congratulate Dr. Jenkins on his upcoming role as director for the Center for Immunology, and thank outgoing director Dr. Mescher for his 18 years of committed service as the center’s founder and director.

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