* WHAT :* West Virginia University is building bridges with international researchers and giving students the opportunity to work in foreign research labs all over the world by hosting the first Multifunctional Nanomaterials International Symposium. Researchers from China, Columbia, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Australia, Thailand, Japan and West Virginia will discuss their latest findings and tour WVU facilities.

* WHO :* James P. Lewis and David Lederman, both physics professors in WVU s Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, will host the symposium. Paul Hill, executive director of the West Virginia Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) program, will be the keynote speaker. The event will feature 14 speakers from across the globe and seven researchers from West Virginia colleges. Thirty-five students from WVU and Marshall University are attending.

Lewis and Lederman are part of WVNano, West Virginias Nanoscale Science, Engineering and Education (NSEE) Initiative. WVNano is multidisciplinary, working across the University to advance West Virginias research environment and diversify its economic base through the growth of discovery and innovation in targeted areas of NSEE . The symposium is co-sponsored by the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, West Virginia EPSCoR, Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center, West Virginia Research Corp. and WVU s Department of Physics.

* WHEN :* 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Friday (April 11) and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday (April 12). For the complete schedule, go tohttp://fireball.phys.wvu.edu/LewisGroup/images/MNIS/program.pdf.

* WHERE :* Stonewall Resort and Conference Center in Roanoke

* WHY :* Lewisand Ledermans idea for the international symposium stemmed from a similar event they organized and attended in China last year. By building relationships with researchers in other countries, students will have the opportunity to study in partnering nations, work in foreign labs similar to study-abroad programs and network within their fields. The initiative is also a recruiting tool to attract international students to West Virginia colleges.

* MEDIA NOTE :* The symposium is open to the public, and members of the media are invited to attend. For more information, contact James Lewis at 304-293-3421 or james.lewis@mail.wvu.edu .