Andrew Ouellette demonstrates an experiment to Physics Club president Melissa MatherStudent Andrew Ouellette demonstrates an experiment to Physics Club president Melissa Mathers.

Medical physics lab providing hands-on training

The largest single donation ever to the Faculty of Science has helped to create a state-of-the-art teaching lab that provides training for students in the medical application of physics. A ceremony Tuesday marked the formal opening of the Morris and Beverly Baker Foundation Laboratory for Medical Physics Education in recognition of a $125,000 contribution.

The lab has already been operating, and Geoff Baran, who graduated from the medical physics program this month, said the hands-on experience helped him to fully understand the theoretical concepts of the field.

“The classroom lectures provided the foundation puzzle pieces, but the lab is what completed the full picture,” he said. “I believe the developed skill set gives University of Windsor students an edge.”

Professor Steven Rehse said the lab, which includes equipment for medical imaging and radiological physics, immerses students in the experience.

“The students are not just given problems to solve,” Dr. Rehse said. “They themselves are involved in developing the experiments conducted here.”

Among the lab’s features are:

  • Virtual Magnetic Resonance Imaging;
  • Ultrasound apparatus;
  • A simulator of computed tomography (CT scanning); and
  • High-resolution gamma-ray spectroscopy.

These technologies are used to investigate the diagnosis and treatments of tumours and other illnesses, highlighted by a partnership with the Windsor Regional Cancer Centre.

“We need to have more minds in the field,” said Jeff Richer, director of the radiation oncology program at Windsor Regional Hospital. “This is a homegrown solution, producing graduates that are extremely well-prepared.”

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