Ivy Tech Bloomington awarded $85,000 federal grant for biotechnology career training in rural high schools

BLOOMINGTON – Ivy Tech Community College’s Bloomington campus was awarded a grant of $85,000 through the Indiana Department of Education’s Carl D. Perkins Title IV federal grant program. Ivy Tech Community College statewide received four grant awards total, in the following regions: Bloomington, Northeast, Southeast and Columbus, with a total combined value of nearly $302,000. Bloomington campus funds will be used to develop life science industry career and technical education pathways for rural Indiana high schools. The project will enable high school students to complete six college credits that count toward two Ivy Tech certificates: Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing and Medical Device Quality. The credits also count toward an Associate of Applied Science degree in Biotechnology. Additionally, the grant will fund professional development for high school teachers, awarding certification renewal credits upon training completion. Training will enable instructors to teach college-level biotechnology courses and will allow students to earn college credits, complete their education at Ivy Tech, and enter life science careers.

Participating schools include Bloomfield High School, Brown County High School, Eastern Greene High School, and Owen Valley High School.

Grant funds will cover stipends for 15 high school teachers to attend a two-week intensive summer workshop, stipends for 3 Ivy Tech instructors to develop the workshop, and supplies and equipment. Through Ivy Tech’s dual credit program, the grant will also cover the cost for high school students to earn college credits toward the Ivy Tech certificates.

Ivy Tech’s certificates, Pharmaceutical Manufacturing and Medical Device Quality, require 18 credits each. High school students will earn six credits toward them, completing Survey of Biotechnology (BIOT 100) and Survey of Biotechnology Manufacturing (BIOT 102). Upon successful completion, students will be qualified for middle-skill level jobs in pharmaceutical manufacturing and medical device quality. Students can apply their certificates to earn the Associate of Applied Science in Biotechnology to qualify for higher-skill level jobs, including Laboratory Technician, Quality Control Technician, Research Associate, Quality Assurance Associate, Manufacturing Associate, Process Development Associate, Calibration Technician, Documentation Technician, Inspector, Production Technician, Regulatory Affairs Clerk, Regulatory Affairs Technician, or Quality Investigator.

“Ivy Tech’s Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing and Medical Device Quality certificates were developed out of industry needs to build a pipeline of employees for middle-skill level technical jobs,” said Dr. Sengyong Lee, program chair of biotechnology at Ivy Tech Bloomington. “Our certificates and biotechnology degree are in demand by area employers, including Cook Medical, Cook Pharmica, Baxter BioPharma Solutions, Boston Scientific, Singota Biosolutions, AB Biotechnologies, and others. Although our biotechnology program has a 96% job placement rate, the growing number of jobs in the industry are outpacing the number of students in the workforce pipeline,” he added.

The project will happen in several phases beginning in fall 2016, when high school instructors will begin to be identified for training. In summer 2017, 15 high school instructors will complete the two-week intensive summer workshop. By fall 2017, a total of 50 students will have completed a total of 300 college credits that will count toward the Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing and Medical Device Quality certificates.

More information about Ivy Tech Community College Bloomington’s biotechnology program can be found online at www.ivytech.edu/biotechnology. Ivy Tech dual credit program information can be found at www.ivytech.edu/dualcredit. Dual credit course availability varies and can be found by contacting individual high school guidance counselors. Ivy Tech second 8-week classes begin October 17. Prospective students can apply online at www.ivytech.edu/applynow, stop into Ivy Tech Bloomington located at 200 Daniels Way, or call (812) 330-6013. Ivy Tech is open Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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