Animal Medicine and Care joins AALAS Art Contest
Staff from UTHealth’s Center for Laboratory Animal Medicine and Care (CLAMC), are looking to keep their winning streak alive in the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) Foundation’s annual art contest with their entry, “Of Mice and Monkeys – Starring Miss Mouse-Key.”
“We participate in the contest each year to represent UTHealth and our department at the National AALAS Conference,” said Jamie Greaver, CLAMC training coordinator. “People from across the United States and the world attend this event.”
Last year CLAMC claimed the 2021 Best in Show Award for their entry “The COVID Killer” and in 2018 won the Fan Favorite Award for their “Sailboat.”
“One of the ways to help raise money for the AALAS Foundation is to have all the art pieces go in a silent auction,” Greaver said. “In 2019, Barbara Arnts, from Queensland, Australia, was in attendance and fell in love with our snowboard. She later told me she stood over it, guarding it from others, and constantly outbidding anyone who dared bid on it.”
This year’s theme is contest is “Swing into Science,” highlighting the important role that monkeys have played in COVID-19 research. Contestants were challenged to paint or decorate a wooden 10-inch monkey to represent the theme.
“The theme for this year was COVID for sure, but especially how UTHealth has had such a positive impact on the community in its response,” Greaver said. “I have seen an felt such division in this country over the last few years, and it just breaks my heart that we haven’t been able to come together as a nation better in this time of such great need.
“I have on my desk a gift from a student I had over the summer many hears ago: A Mouse-Key. As I sat starting at it, wondering what to do this year, I thought about how most of the animals that are worked with in research are mice, but that we really do have the monkeys to thank for the COVID vaccines. Then I thought about the quote from Steinbeck’s “Of Mice and Men,” of UTHealth’s many positive roles in the COVID fight, and it all just clicked.”
Voting for the contest is open on the AALS Foundation’s Facebook Page. Each “like” of the photo is equal to one vote. The photo receiving the most likes on the Facebook page between now and 11 a.m., Oct. 20 will win the “Fan Favorite” award.
A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, the AALAS Foundation is dedicated to educating the public about the compassionate professionals working in laboratory animal science and the important role of animals working in research. The AALAS Foundation develops free educational materials and innovative public awareness programs to help inform students, teachers, and the general public, about the importance of quality animal care and use to benefit humans and animals.