BioForward is reaching out to members to highlight their organizations through a new member profile feature to tell more of their stories. Biopharmaceutical Technology Center Institute agreed to be interviewed as a part of our efforts to heighten the awareness of our region.
About your organization:
In partnership with many other organizations, the BioPharmaceutical Technology Center Institute (BTC Institute) provides educational opportunities that support scientific understanding, contributing to the success of the biotechnology industry. The BTC Institute exists to:
- offer training in biotechnology and biopharmaceutical manufacturing;
- promote the exchange of information between industry, educators and the general public;
- support the development of high technology industries;
- facilitate science, technology, nature discovery and arts programs for children and young adults;
- encourage greater understanding of the creative process;
- enable community organizations to offer educational and cultural programs.
What do you find valuable about being a member of BioForward Wisconsin?
Being a part of BioForward Wisconsin allows us to connect with other organizations near us with similar interests in developing the biotechnology industry in our state, and more broadly improve the STEM career pipeline. The ability to share information and network with people at various levels of member organizations is a meaningful benefit for us as many teachers and learners that engage with programs through the BTC Institute have ties to BioForward.
What are the key areas of or achievements by your organization that are impacting the state of Wisconsin and the overall biohealth industry?
The BTC Institute was established in 1993 with generous support from Promega Corporation. Since then, we have worked with thousands of students at education levels from middle school to high school, college and beyond, including professional learners. We have partnered with many organizations to offer programs that allow students to get hands-on experience as they learn laboratory techniques and concepts and engage with technology as its being developed. Many of the students that we have worked with have gone on to productive careers as scientists and medical professionals.
What about the future of research, medical, technological innovation excites you the most?
The pace at which discoveries are being made in these areas has increased the need for diverse thinkers and problem solvers. It’s such an exciting time to be engaged with biotechnology and we love both introducing learners to biotechnology and helping those already engaged in this space grow their knowledge and understanding.
What is one thing others may not know about your organization?
We are a not-for-profit organization, and as such, we partner with so many great organizations in the area to create programming that allows us to reach students at many levels and from many backgrounds. In addition to our biotechnology field trips, Youth Apprenticeship and high school programs, teacher training, undergraduate and graduate level courses (including laboratory-based elements of the UW-Madison MS-Biotechnology program). What many people don’t know, is that we recently opened the Bell Burnell Observatory, an historic facility, for programming once again. These programs will give stargazers of all ages a unique opportunity to get hands-on experience with modern observational tools.