MMDS Graduation and Corporate Partner Recognition

On December 8, 2011, the Division of CLS hosted a reception to recognize the graduating Master’s Degree in Molecular Diagnostic Science students and the MDS Corporate Partners.

MMDS Graduation and Corporate Partner Recognition click to enlarge MDS Corporate Partners Representatives and 2011 scholarship recipients.

Representatives from the Corporate Partners congratulated the graduates and spoke about their commitment to the education of future laboratory professionals and the important role of molecular diagnostics in the future of health care. Pandora Ray, the Director of the National Center for Public Health Laboratory Leadership Association of Public Health Laboratories, spoke to the graduates and inspired them to serve the needs of patients in their careers.  She shared a moving testimony to the importance of the laboratory practitioner (click here to read Ray's comments).

The MMDS Class of 2011 presented the results of their Capstone research projects on December 9.  Many of the clinical instructors and Corporate Partners attended the session and were impressed with the students’ work and presentations.  The students and their presentations were:

Hannah M. Bowman–Validation of a Real-time Quantitative RT-PCR Assay for Detecting PML-RAR Transcripts: Reproducibility, Intra-precision, and Inter-precision

Kay C. Chao–Verification of Cytochrome p450 2D6 Genotyping by xTAG® CYP2D6 Kits with Luminex 100 Detection System

Avian Elliott–Optimization of a New Detection and Quantification Method for Amplified Mitochondrial DNA

Benjamin Feldmann–Development of a Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction Assay for Quantification of Human Herpesvirus 6

Amanda Fitzgerald–EpiTect® Plus Bisulfite Conversion Kit for FFPE Samples Representative of Glioma

Ross Gagnon–JAK2 DNA Sequencing of Exons 12, 13, and 14

Alex Lee–Dual Mutations in the Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Kinase Pathway

Eleanor Penley–Cross-Sectional Study of Samples Submitted for High-Risk HPV

Donald Stephen Serafin–Clinical Importance of Adenovirus DNA in the Plasma of Transplant Recipients: Review of Current Knowledge and Development of a Quantitative Real-time PCR Assay

MMDS Graduation Comments by Pandora Ray

Who are you?  You, or someone like you, have touched me hundreds of times, but you will rarely see me, never feel me.  You will give me hope, provide joy, and unfortunately, deliver bad news.  You will never be there to share in my excitement or comfort me in my times of sorrow.  However, you will still feel these emotions from a distance.  Your tasks will be limitless, but always behind the scenes.  I know that because of you, the world will be a better place.

You are a Laboratory Scientist.  You are the one who will discover a pregnancy in the couple who had a slim hope of ever bearing a child, but will not be there to “high-five” them.  You will give closure to thousands of families in some yet to occur disaster by identifying the remains of their loved ones, but you will not be there to share their tears.  You will personally discover a terrorist’s weapon of choice, Anthrax, but will not bask in the limelight.  You will discover that the lump in your sister’s, wife’s, or mother’s breast was not cancer after all (or was).  You found my disease early enough for a successful recovery or at least in time for me to wrap up loose ends.  You recognized when I needed more iron, less medication, and a better diet.  You identified a perfect match for the donor heart I so desperately needed.  You supplied most of the evidence my physician used to diagnose my condition.  But you never got to tell me so.

The laboratory community is a large, critical component of the health care industry.  
I can equate this community to a giant iceberg; only the tip shows.  The primary exposure a person has to the laboratory is when the phlebotomist is there to collect samples.  The remainder of the laboratory personnel is rarely seen.  The members of the collective laboratory science organizations have been tasked with providing the “Face of the Lab” by educating the public on what you do and who you are.  You have little opportunity to “blow your own horn” due to the fact there is usually no audience to hear your call.

Imagine a world where the role of a laboratorian is readily understood and acknowledged by the general public…where what you do is widely known.  I revel in your accomplishments and will be forever grateful for your dedication to your work.  Congratulations and welcome to the cadre of unsung heroes, on behalf of CCCLW and all of our partners in promoting the value and integrity of the laboratory workforce.

2011 Gold-Level MDS Corporate Partners

abbott molecular

Abbott Molecular

Association of Public Health Laboratories

Association of Public Health Laboratories

BD Diagnostics

BD Molecular Diagnostics

Hologic/GenProbe - Platinum


Laboratory Corporation of America

Laboratory Corporation of America

Roche Diagnostics

Roche Diagnostics Corporation

Quest Diagnostics - Platinum

Quest Diagnostics


ZeptoMetrix Corporation

For more information on the MDS Corporate Partners Program, click here,
or contact contact Kyle Gray (919.966-3352 or