The mission of the CEN is to foster creativity and collaboration among people who have a passion for understanding the complexities of the nervous system and applying this knowledge to improve human health, productivity and quality of life.
The CEN supports:
- Innovative, high-quality undergraduate and graduate neuroscience programs
- Multidisciplinary teams of scientists and health care professionals engaged in translational research
- Dynamic collaborations between CEN members and external partners including hospitals and health care providers, biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, and nonprofit institutions
- Well-developed outreach programs that promote K-12 and community neuroscience education
- Unique partnerships that advance economic development efforts in the State of Maine
Developing a Center for Excellence in the Neurosciences at UNE made sense from a number of perspectives:
- There is an urgent and unmet need for better understanding the pathophysiology of neurological diseases, and for applying this knowledge to the clinical practice of medicine in order to improve patient quality of life.
- UNE has a nascent program in the neurosciences, with faculty expertise that crosses between the colleges and includes not only the basic and clinical sciences, but also the liberal arts. By fostering research and education collaborations across a broad variety of disciplines, the center strives to make innovative breakthrough discoveries in the neurosciences that lead to improvements in human health and well-being. This approach also offers unique training opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students who have shared interests in the field.
- UNE has a diverse group of graduate and undergraduate degree programs, including a number of clinical and public health programs that have direct and indirect connections to the neurosciences.
- Maine has a number of groups that share interests in neuroscience and neurology, including Maine Medical Center, the Jackson Laboratories, the University of Maine, and the Maine Institute for Human Genetics and Health.
- Developing a true interdisciplinary group of faculty and students who share an interest and passion for neuroscience research is readily achievable at a private institution like UNE.
- There are a variety of public and private funding opportunities that can be more effectively leveraged by faculty who are part of a center. Faculty recruitment and mentoring opportunities are also strengthened in a center environment, and help promote the academic reputation of the University.