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Training the future biomanufacturing workforce

New Rochelle, NY, October 24, 2013To maintain strong growth of the bioeconomy, a pool of skilled workers is needed to fill biomanufacturing jobs in the areas of bioenergy and biobased products. A proven strategy for building a high-quality regional workforce is for colleges and industry to work together to develop innovation solutions that combine education and hands-on training, as described in a Roundtable Discussion published in Industrial Biotechnology (IB), a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. The article is available free on the Industrial Biotechnology website.

Moderator Sonia Wallman, PhD, Executive Director, Northeast Biomanufacturing Center and Collaborative (NBC2, Blue Bell, PA), leads a panel comprised of corporate executives, the directors of two academic biotechnology programs, and graduates of those programs who now work in the biofuels and renewable materials industries. In the Roundtable Discussion "Training Technicians to Support the Bioeconomy: Defining the Need; Designing and Implementing Innovative Solutions," the participants discuss industry workforce needs and the development of biomanufacturing degree programs that combine classroom learning with hands-on research and scale-up experience within a college laboratory or onsite in an industrial setting.

The Roundtable Discussion is part of an IB IN DEPTH Special Section on the Biomanufacturing Workforce published in the October issue of Industrial Biotechnology. The section also includes an Overview entitled "Meeting Current Needs and Assessing Future Opportunities to Drive the Global Bioeconomy;" and three Catalyzing Innovation articles: "Putting Life to Work: Tales of Community and Collaboration in Industrial Biotechnician Education," by Michael Fino, Director, Biotechnology Program, MiraCosta College (Oceanside, CA); "Strategic Alliances Create Path to Commercialization for a Microalgae-Focused Start-Up," by Adelheid Kuehnle, PhD, President, CEO, and Co-Founder, and Mark Ritchie, Chief Business Development Officer, Kuehnle AgroSystems (Honolulu, HI); and "Undergraduate Research: A Platform to Enhance Community College STEM Education," by Daniel Kainer, PhD, Director, Biotechnology Institute, Lone Star College-Montgomery (Conroe, TX).

"This issue of IB seeks to underscore the importance of hands-on education and training in developing the next generation of scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs, and policy makers that will help drive the development of the global bioeconomy. Partnerships like those featured in this issue are essential to developing innovative educational and training programs to encourage young people to engage the bioeconomy and to support life-long learning for all those who desire to be part of the bioeconomy," says Larry Walker, PhD, Co-Editor-in-Chief and Professor, Biological & Environmental Engineering, Cornell University (Ithaca, NY).


Contact: Kathryn Ruehle
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc./Genetic Engineering News

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