Focus Track Friday Event Highlights Bioprocessing
Students will make valuable connections with industry leaders and learn about new developments in bioprocessing education during KGI's next Focus Track Friday event on Feb. 4, featuring experts from the Amgen Bioprocessing Center Advisory Board (ABCAB).
Launched in the fall, Focus Track Fridays provide KGI students with the opportunity to meet industry speakers discussing the changing landscape of business and technology. Each event corresponds to one of five career focus tracks at KGI: Medical Devices and Diagnostics; Bio/Pharmaceutical Discovery and Development; Business of Bioscience; Clinical and Regulatory Affairs; and Bioprocessing.
Focus Track Fridays help students deepen their relationships with industry executives while integrating KGI's outstanding academic programs with other departments, including corporate relations and career services.
The Feb. 4 event will include many of the 40-member ABCAB, which consists of scientists, engineers, academics and corporate executives from top companies who provide support and advice to the Amgen Bioprocessing Center. The state-of-the-art center teaches students the skills necessary to become leaders in manufacturing biopharmaceuticals and antibiotics and renewable biofuels, such as ethanol and biodiesel.
Discussions will feature new KGI courses on the Fundamentals of Commercial Biotech Operations and Business Operations, plus other successful models to educate the next generation of business leaders in bioprocessing.
Also on the agenda is alumnus Daniel Abramzon, a Master of Bioscience graduate from 2007 who studied bioprocessing. Now a master production planner for Genentech, Abramzon will outline his company's strategic capacity management efforts.
Other recent KGI alumni will present their Team Masters Project (TMP) on biologics development capacity modeling and analysis (sponsored by Allergan), and alpha prototype testing of a novel disposable bioreactor system (sponsored by PBS).
TMPs represent an important connection with ABCAB, says Matthew S. Croughan, PhD, KGI's George B. and Joy Rathmann Professor and director of the Amgen Bioprocessing Center, who is chairing the event.
"A lot of our board members sponsor TMPs and hire our students," Croughan said. "This meeting keeps them engaged with the institution and our students, who have a lot of skills to show off."
Previous Focus Track Fridays have emphasized business opportunities in the life sciences industry and drug discovery and clinical development. Among the overall goals of the program are to broaden the network of companies that hire KGI students and alums, expose potential students to the benefits of studying at KGI, and attract sponsorship opportunities, says Stella Marks, assistant vice president for academic affairs and associate dean of faculty.
"This was a way to create real-time networking and industry interface experience for our students and at the same time showcase our students and our campus to the rest of the world," she said.
By Margie Fishman