Rep. Steve Chabot Visits UC Neurology Lab
During the 2015 Congressional August recess, 2015 Early Career Policy Fellow Ryan Makinson and SfN Government and Public Affairs Committee member Kim Seroogy met with Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH) at his in-district office. During this meeting, they discussed their research and expressed concerns over the future of scientific progress as related to NSF and NIH funding. At the conclusion of the meeting, Seroogy invited the congressman to visit the University of Cincinnati (UC) to tour his lab, which studies depression and neurodegenerative diseases.
A month later, Chabot's staff contacted Makinson and Seroogy to accept the invitation and set a date. On September 21st, the Congressman toured Seroogy's lab at the UC Medical Center. Seroogy and Makinson led the tour, during which Chabot met with members of UC leadership and distinguished principle investigators, including Marshall Montrose, vice provost and dean of the graduate school; and Mark Baccei, associate professor and associate director of the UC Neuroscience Graduate Program.
During the lab tour, Chabot was able to learn more about the specialized personnel, resources and equipment necessary to study complex biological questions. Chabot also took the opportunity to help section a rat brain on a microtome. The lab tour was followed up with a roundtable discussion on the importance of scientific research for human health. Also mentioned, was how scientific funding positively impacts the economy and the training of future neuroscientists. Chabot expressed optimism about supporting scientific research and was particularly interested in the process by which NIH grants are awarded. At the end of the visit, Seroogy and Makinson offered to be a resource on scientific information in the future. After the visit, Chabot posted the following on his facebook page: “Today, I had an extremely interesting tour of UC College of Medicine’s Neuroscience Laboratories. Thank you to the University of Cincinnati Academic Health Center for inviting me and to everyone who took the time to meet with me.”
SfN helps neuroscientists form lasting relationships with policymakers and their staff. Contact the SfN Advocacy department if you are interested in learning more about how to give a member of Congress or other VIP a tour of your laboratory.