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Widening the Lens: Illuminating Talent with Immersive Microscopy Education

Award Imaging Scientist

Funding Cycle Cycle 2


Bryan Millis, PhD

Vanderbilt University (Cell Imaging Shared Resource and the Vanderbilt Biophotonics Center)


A self-described “cell biologist with physicist envy,” Bryan Millis has a passion for combining aspects of the life and physical sciences to address complex biomedical research challenges. Microscopy and imaging science have provided a natural outlet for such interests. Bryan has spent years in both academic and industry settings, first learning, then applying, and now developing next-generation optical platforms. He shares his enthusiasm for imaging with the next generation of scientists and works to create educational programs that bring imaging to a wider audience. Bryan hopes to advance the field of imaging through expanding collaborative environments between imaging scientists and biologists, innovating next generation instrumentation, and developing immersive educational programs.

Project Description

Microscopy has been a cornerstone of scientific discovery for centuries and played a major role in our fundamental understanding of the building blocks of life. It provides researchers with insight into the underpinnings of many diseases and potential treatments. Advances in technology have ushered in increasingly complex imaging platforms requiring familiarity in diverse disciplines, from cell biology to optical physics to computer science. This project aims to bring high-end imaging technology and expertise to students across the globe who may not yet have such an opportunity at their home institution. By incorporating immersive virtual content in a small group setting, along with trainee-led interest groups at their own institutions, this project will dramatically expand imaging expertise to students of all backgrounds.