Lyman Briggs College

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Lyman Briggs College
Logo of Michigan State University
Location East Lansing, Michigan, USA
Established 1967
Named for Lyman James Briggs

Elizabeth Simmons

  • Associate deans:
    Mark Largent, Robert LaDuca
  • Assistant dean:
    Philip Strong
Residents 1900 (approximate)
Website Lyman Briggs College Website

The Lyman Briggs College (LBC) is a residential college located at Michigan State University in East Lansing, Michigan, United States. Established as a residential college in 1967, Lyman Briggs was a residential school within the College of Natural Sciences from 1981 to 2007, but has since returned to residential college status.[1]

Purpose and history[edit]

The college is named in honor of Lyman James Briggs, who attended Michigan Agricultural College from 1889 to 1893.

The Lyman Briggs College intends to address C. P. Snow's "Two Cultures" by bridging the divide between the sciences and humanities, effectively attempting to create a curriculum of "liberal sciences." Science classes offered by LBC include chemistry, biology, physics, and math, and also classes such as "Literature and Science", "Science and Technology Studies", and a Senior Seminar program. All of these classes attempt to reveal science's relationship with society, literature, and philosophy. Smaller class sizes allow for more interaction with professors.

The Lyman Briggs College is located in Holmes Hall (named for founder John Clough Holmes), the largest residence hall on campus. Many of the over 1250 students in the residence hall are members of LBC. Many of the students in the Lyman Briggs program intend to pursue careers in medicine, but there are a variety of other programs that are supported by Lyman Briggs. In all, there are over 30 coordinate majors, from human biology to computer sciences. LBC also has the unique distinction of being one of the few major schools to allow undergraduate students to assist in the classroom as "Learning Assistants." Learning Assistants run supervised recitations and labs in chemistry, biology, math, and physics.

Lyman Briggs College was made a school (i.e., a sub-unit) of the College of Natural Sciences in 1981, with a name change to Lyman Briggs School of Science. In 2007, the school went through the formal process of regaining its status as a residential college, "in time for the school's 40th anniversary in the fall [of 2007]."[2] The proposal to change its status was unanimously approved by the Faculty Council on April 10, 2007, and was presented to the Academic Council on April 17, 2007.[3] From there the proposal moved on to the MSU Board of Trustees for final approval, which was granted on Friday, June 15, 2007. The new dean of Lyman Briggs College is the previous director of Lyman Briggs School, Elizabeth Simmons, Ph.D. Dr. Simmons also is a professor of physics in the Department of Physics and Astronomy.[4]

The LBC partners with the James Madison College (JMC) and the MSU Department of Fisheries and Wildlife in the Science, Technology, Environment, and Public Policy specialization, which is based at JMC.

Relation to other MSU residential colleges[edit]

The James Madison College at Michigan State University was founded in the same year on the same principle of residential college, but in the area of public policy, political theory, and the liberal arts. Madison and Briggs Colleges collaborate with the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife in offering an undergraduate specialization in Science, Technology, the Environment, and Public Policy (STEPPS). Students in the two colleges enjoy friendly competition through the annual fall Canoe Race and spring Olympics.

In fall 2007, Michigan State opened a new Residential College in the Arts and Humanities. RCAH is collaborating with Madison and Briggs Colleges on a 21st Century Chautauqua, co-sponsored by the American Association of Colleges and Universities.


  1. ^ Michigan State University Newsroom - MSU board approves naming of Lyman Briggs College
  2. ^ Harbison, Sarah (2007-04-04). "Lyman Briggs may go back to college status". The State News. Retrieved 2007-04-04. 
  3. ^ Harbison, Sarah (2007-04-13). "Lyman Briggs School moves one step closer to college status". The State News. Retrieved 2007-04-20. 
  4. ^ Orlando, Jennifer. "Name change". The State News. June 18, 2007. Accessed June 21, 2007.

External links[edit]