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Media Advisory/Photo Opportunity

03/19/2010
Local School Teachers Get Hands-on Biomanufacturing Workshop at Hudson Valley Community College

CONTACT: Eric Bryant (518) 629-8071
FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Friday, March 19, 2010

WHO/WHAT:

High school biology and chemistry teachers from Tech Valley school districts will be at Hudson Valley Community College to get hands-on experience with biomanufacturing and learn how they can encourage students to pursue careers in biotech and biomanufacturing – two industries that could boost the Capital Region economy and provide good-paying jobs.

School districts represented include: Averill Park, Berlin, Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake, Cambridge, Duanesburg, Fort Ann, Hudson, Mohonasen, Schenectady, Schuylerville and Stillwater.

WHEN:

Monday, March 22 through Thursday, March 25. See schedule below.

WHERE:

Fitzgibbons Health Technologies Center, various locations, Hudson Valley Community College campus. Tours of Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, a local biomanufacturer, will also take place.

DETAILS:

The workshops, called “Protein is Cash,” will allow high school teachers to experience a new manufacturing industry that is growing locally and nationally and one that needs skilled technicians and professionals. In the Hudson Valley Community College labs, the teachers will be transforming cells with genes and then nurturing those cells to produce protein. They will then purify and test their product. It’s a laboratory-scale replication of the work that’s done in places like Regeneron, and it provides teachers with hands on experience they can replicate in their own classrooms. One of the ultimate goals of the program is to encourage students to pursue careers in the biotech and biomanufacturing fields.

The workshops are provided by the Northeast Biomanufacturing Center and Collaborative, which works with the industry to create biomanufacturing curriculum and professional development for teachers. Faculty representatives from Hudson Valley Community College, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Finger Lakes Community College will be assisting with the laboratory work.

The training also is co-sponsored by the Greater Capital Region Career Pathways Consortium (GCRCPC) through funding provided by the federal Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Improvement Act of 2006 and the New York State Education Department. The Greater Capital Region Career Pathways Consortium is a partnership between SUNY Cobleskill, Columbia-Greene Community College, Hudson Valley Community College, Capital Region BOCES, Questar III BOCES, Washington-Saratoga-Warren-Hamilton-Essex BOCES, Schenectady County Community College. The Consortium is developing new programs in green technologies, advanced manufacturing systems, nanotechnol¬ogy and bioscience at both the high school and college level. The Consortium is also working to improve the connection be¬tween other career and technical education programs taught at the high school level with degree programs offered at local colleges.