News Service


Benjamin Allen, College of Business, (515) 294-2422
Russ Laczniak, College of Business, (515) 294-9692
James Melsa, College of Engineering, (515) 294-5935
Camilla Benbow, College of Education, (515) 294-0283
Michelle Johnson, News Service, (515) 294-8986


AMES, Iowa -- Iowa State University will celebrate the grand opening of its new 3M Corporate Business Laboratory Monday, Dec. 8. Festivities will begin with a brief program at 10 a.m. in the Gallery of the ISU Memorial Union. Following the program, an open house will be held from 10:45 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the laboratory, which is located at 2625 North Loop Dr., Building 2, in the ISU Research Park.

Established earlier this year, the laboratory is a cooperative effort between 3M Corp., St. Paul, Minn., and ISU's Colleges of Business, Engineering and Education.

"The laboratory provides students with a truly unique learning opportunity," said Benjamin Allen, dean of the College of Business. "It will significantly enhance their experience at Iowa State and better prepare them for the working world."

The laboratory enables ISU students, working in interdisciplinary teams, to help design and execute research projects for one of the world's leading manufacturers. Projects underway include scanning the business environment for new distribution strategies and sales force incentives; scouting new product markets; and improving product design.

"By working in interdisciplinary teams, the students and 3M benefit from seeing a problem from three very different perspectives," said Russ Laczniak, assistant professor of marketing and faculty advisor for the lab.

Interdisciplinary teams are at work in many organizations today, but few students have the opportunity to work on such teams until they are employed after graduation, said Laczniak.

One faculty member from each college uses the laboratory to conduct class projects and teach courses designed to collaborate with student team research projects. Two full- time personnel from 3M manage the daily activity of the laboratory.

The business laboratory is currently housed in a temporary facility at the ISU Research Park. A new 4,200-square-foot facility is under construction in the park.


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