Tue Jul 17, 2018
For Immediate Release
Contact: Todd M. Smith, Ph.D.
Digital World Biology Receives an NSF ATE Grant to Advance Biotech-Careers.org and Bio-Link.org
SEATTLE, Digital World Biology LLC (https://dwbio.com), a biotechnology education company, announces that it has received a $351,000 three-year grant from the National Science Foundation’s Advanced Technology Education Program to advance Biotech-Careers.org and Bio-Link.org capabilities (award DUE 1764225). “Both websites have been invaluable resources for the biotechnology education community. Together, they’ve served nearly three million pages in over 1.3 million sessions,” stated Dr. Sandra Porter, Digital World Biology’s (DWBio.com) founder and president. Porter continued, “I’ve been part of the Bio-Link network for 20 years, first as a regional director, and for the past 10 years as a Co-PI on Bio-Link and director of community outreach. DWBio is thrilled that the NSF ATE community understands the value that has been created and wants to see further development.” In the project, DWBio will introduce capabilities to Biotech-Careers.org that help improve students’ knowledge of biotech opportunities and ability to find employment as well as improve and sustain the digital infrastructure connecting the biotech-education online community.
“Over the past 20 years, Bio-Link has grown from a few core community college biotech programs to a thriving network of over 1000 members that includes individuals from community colleges, four-year institutions, a growing number of high-schools, students, and industry professionals. Biotechnology continues to rapidly grow, with jobs in this industry creating paths and opportunities that allow students from all backgrounds to participate in meaningful careers in the STEM workforce, provided they have the proper education. Digital World Biology’s commitment to education and work on Bio-Link has been a strong factor in our success and I am very pleased to see the company receive additional funding to continue the efforts.” Stated Dr. Elaine Johnson, Bio-Link’s National Center executive director from City College of San Francisco.
Dr. Linnea Fletcher, Director of the Austin Bio-Link Regional Center at Austin Community College, added, “I’ve worked with Dr. Porter from the beginning of Bio-Link, and with Digital World Biology through both Bio-Link and my center. The company brings a unique perspective and valuable business and sustainability experience to NSF ATE projects and centers. They have also provided important insights into emerging trends in the biotech industry, particularly in the areas of bioinformatics and data science. We’re excited to see this group receive this award. Their work will be tremendously helpful as we prepare for the next NSF ATE National Center of Excellence in Biotechnology.”
About Bio-Link, and Bio-Link.org. Bio-Link is an NSF ATE National Biotechnology Center of Excellence. As such, it has established a national network of community and technical colleges that provide biotechnology workforce education. The Bio-Link.org website serves as a database of these institutions and the credentials they offer. Students and employers use this database to learn what is taught in various regions of the United States. Bio-Link members use the site to connect with their peers. For instructors, Bio-Link.org has resources that include biotechnology curricula, publications and industry reports, and a Bio-Link event calendar for professional development. Other resources include conference presentations, videos, and blogs about the biotechnology industry.
About Biotech-Careers.org. Biotech-Careers.org (BTC) is a resource that describes the biotechnology industry for students, employers, and instructors. As an educational resource the site contains information in the form of blogs, photo journals, and videos about working and finding work in the biotechnology industry. It also includes internship information and job postings. As an industry resource, BTC provides one of the largest open access databases of biotechnology companies and employers with key words and location information to provide students, job seekers, educators, and employers with real time data about the industry.
About the Austin Bio-Link Regional Center and AC2.Bio-Link.org. The Austin Bio-Link Regional Center is based at Austin Community College, funded by the NSF, and headed up by Dr. Linnea Fletcher. The center works in Texas and Kentucky to define and implement critical elements for supporting biotechnology workforce education and catalyzing the growth of local bioeconomies. Information about the center can be found at AC2.Bio-Link.org.
About the National Science Foundation’s Advanced Technology Education program. Congress established the NSF ATE program in 1992 to promote education in high-technology fields that drive our nation's economy. The program involves partnerships between academic institutions and industry and supports curriculum development, professional development of college faculty and secondary school teachers, career pathways, and other activities.
About Digital World Biology LLC. Since 2008, DWBio has developed and provided educational resources in bioinformatics and biotechnology education. The company’s BLAST tutorials are used worldwide. Its Molecule World apps are used in both colleges and high schools to help students visualize and understand 3D molecular structures. DWBio also develops bioinformatics course materials, with Shoreline Community College on the NSF ATE project START Immuno-biotechnology (DUE 1700441) in immunoinformatics, and Austin Community College and has designed and supports Biotech-Careers.org and Bio-Link.org.