|Dr. Larry Blanton is the Director of the University Honors Program, Professor of Plant Biology, and Director of Graduate Programs for the Department of Plant Biology.
Dr. Blanton graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a B.S. in Botany with Highest Honors from the University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill), where he also earned his Ph.D. in Botany . He was a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, NSF Postdoctoral Fellow (University of Georgia-Athens), and NATO Postdoctoral Fellow (Culture Centre of Algae and Protozoa in Cambridge, England). At various times in his career, he was a visiting research scientist in the Department of Biochemistry, University of Cambridge; the Imperial Cancer Research Fund, London, England; the Wellcome Trust BioCenter of the University of Dundee, Scotland; and the Wood Research Institute, Kyoto University, Japan. Dr. Blanton's research interests center on the cellular slime mold Dictyostelium discoideum, specifically the biosynthesis of cellulose and the role of the extracellular matrix during development.
At NC State, he has taught PB 414 (Cell Biology) several times and developed and teaches each semester HON 310 (The Creative Process in Science). Prior to joining NC State in 2003, Dr. Blanton spent 18 years on the faculty of the Department of Biological Sciences at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, where he directed a large grant-funded biological sciences education program. At Texas Tech, Dr. Blanton received the New Faculty Award, the Presidential Excellence in Teaching Award, and was twice the recipient of the student-initiated Mortar Board/Omicron Delta Kappa Outstanding Faculty Award. Prior to his departure from Texas Tech, alumni, students, faculty colleagues, and others established the Richard L. Blanton Endowed Scholarship in support of undergraduate research.
He was co-editor with Roman Taraban (TTU-Psychology) of "Creating Effective Undergraduate Research Programs in Science: The Transformation from Student to Scientist" (New York: Teachers College Press, 2008).