The overall goal of the Rutgers-UMDNJ Ph.D. Training Program in Biotechnology is to provide predoctoral Students with an integrated multidisciplinary educational and research training experience in biotechnology. This program produces professionals who are well-educated within a single discipline and have the cross- disciplinary skills needed to conduct independent research and development at the forefront of the constantly evolving discipline of biotechnology. The 33 faculty members in the training program come from numerous different science and engineering departments at the two universities. The training program guides the students through a unifying and multifaceted curriculum, and provides specialized activities such as summer industrial internships, an annual symposium and a research seminar/journal club. We are requesting 12 predoctoral positions per year in the current proposal. Both universities provide significant matching fellowship support and stipend/tuition supplements;Rutgers also provides additional administrative and financial support. Industrial interaction is exceedingly strong, with industrial investigators participating in the teaching of courses, participating in seminars and the Annual Minisymposium, hosting summer interns, providing matching support, serving on thesis committees, and occasionally hosting students for a part of their Ph.D. dissertation work. The participating graduate programs and departments, together with several Biotechnology related centers provide exceptional facilities for biotechnology research and education. Vigorous and extensive recruitment efforts are expended to attract applicants to the program, and only students of exceptional abilities and motivation are admitted. The training helps to meet national needs for personnel trained to apply the tools of engineering and the quantitative sciences to significant research problems in biology and medicine. The program also vigorously recruits students from under-represented minorities into the biotechnology field with recent remarkable success. These efforts will continue unabated through the continuing program.
Biotechnology is a discipline and industry, the mission of which is to improve and save human lives. Over the past 20 years, biotechnology research and training has delivered numerous new drugs, diagnostics, and vaccines;new biomedical materials, devices and drug delivery systems;new crops that reduce pesticide use and industrial enzymes that cut chemical waste and energy consumption in manufacturing;as well as therapeutics, diagnostics, rapid response systems and decontamination enzymes aimed at neutralizing the agents of biological warfare.
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