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Medical college gets mobile teaching lab

Special Photo
 This 11-by-35 foot mobile lab on Gwinnett Medical Center’s Lawrenceville campus will soon be a home for hands-on learning. 

Special Photo This 11-by-35 foot mobile lab on Gwinnett Medical Center’s Lawrenceville campus will soon be a home for hands-on learning. 

LAWRENCEVILLE — An 11-by-35-foot mobile lab on Gwinnett Medical Center’s Lawrenceville campus will soon be a home for hands-on learning.

When classes start Monday, up to 10 students from the Medical College of Georgia will be training to become clinical laboratory scientists, performing tests in all kinds of medical fields in their new portable home.

Two years in the making, the original plan was to have the mobile lab supplement MCG’s lab space at Georgia Gwinnett College. But an influx of students there meant the school needed the space originally allotted to MCG, leaving the mobile classroom as the only option.

“We’re now using the mobile lab as our only lab space,” Medical College of Georgia spokeswoman Sharron Walls said. “Without it we would have been pretty much up the creek.”

The $346,000 facility was funded as part of a $1.2 million Intellectual Capital Partnership Program grant from the University System of Georgia Board of Regents.

The self-contained lab will enable students to perform tests and complete curriculum including microbiology, biochemistry, immunology, hematology, blood banking and molecular diagnostics.

More than half of MCG’s clinical laboratory science students are distance learners, primarily in the Atlanta area.

“This mobile unit was intended to expand our capacity in Atlanta, but without it we would have lost our presence in the area,” program director Dr. Barbara Russell said.