(May 14, 2008)

Contact: Rick DelaHaya, Centenary News Services, 318.869.5073

Centenary Professor Receives Research Funding

Dr. Mary Garrett
Dr. Mary Robert Garrett

SHREVEPORT, La.—The Research Corporation, a foundation for the advancement of science, announced May 6 that Dr. Mary Robert Garrett of Centenary College has been awarded the Cottrell College Science Award for her work in organic chemistry research.

Garrett, an assistant professor of chemistry, was awarded funding in the amount of $41,271 for her research project entitled Synthesis of Enantioenriched Beta-Ketoesters via a Ketene-Claisen.

"I'm absolutely thrilled and ready to get some experiments running," said Garrett. "By funding my proposal, the Research Corporation has demonstrated their confidence in me as a beginning faculty member and research scientist."

According to Garrett, chemists are constantly striving to improve upon current synthesis and methodology techniques. "We know how to make certain drugs and natural products, but we want to develop new ways that are faster, less expensive, and more environmentally friendly," she explained. "My research will work towards achieving that goal."

With more than $41,000 in funding, Garrett will be able to add to the chemistry department's equipment inventory with items specific to organic chemistry research. She will also be able to support two Centenary College students in conducting research during this summer and two students during summer 2009.

"I'll be mentoring two rising juniors, Cara Miccoli and Andy Osborn, in organic chemistry research," Garrett said. "Besides conducting experiments, they will give presentations and hear from other Centenary students conducting research in the natural science division. Hopefully, this experience will assist them in determining their next step of life after Centenary, whether that means graduate school, medical school, or an industry position. It is something I am really looking forward to!"

During the 90-year history of Research Corporation, they have endeavored to address critical issues that impact science. At the end of World War II Research Corporation initiated a research grant program that assisted scientists in their return to universities and colleges, and this program started the research careers of thirty Nobel Prize recipients. In the early 1970s Research Corporation started the Cottrell College Science Award program to further stimulate research in the undergraduate environment and careers in science.

The Cottrell College Science Award supports significant research that contributes to the advancement of science and to the professional and scholarly development of faculty at undergraduate institutions along with their students.

About Centenary College of Louisiana

Centenary College is a private, four-year arts and sciences college affiliated with the United Methodist Church. Founded in 1825, it is the oldest chartered liberal arts college west of the Mississippi River and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Centenary is one of 16 colleges and universities constituting the Associated Colleges of the South and is regularly rated as one of the top colleges in the South. In 2008 Centenary College celebrates 100 years in Shreveport and Bossier City.