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BioKansas & STEM Education
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TO EDUCATE – Help to develop tomorrow’s life science workforce

BioKansas is committed to helping better prepare the life science workforce of tomorrow.  First, we promote STEM education and raise awareness of STEM career paths by providing scholarships, mentoring, and industry judges for the following events:


Second, we help align curriculum at universities and colleges across the region with the evolving needs of our industry.  Through unique industry/education collaborations, we work to make sure the needs of our industry members are understood and incorporated into the curriculum at our regional universities and workforce development organizations.  An example is a program developed at a local community college to address the workforce needs of an animal health company in the area.  This program resulted in a ~20% reduction in turnover, and was the direct result of a BioKansas facilitated partnership.

 

April 2018

We traveled to the Greater Kansas City Science and Engineering Fair and the Kansas State Science and Engineering Fair at the beginning of April to evaluate projects for the Kansas BioGENEius Challenge. Along with our industry judges we assessed 92 presentations and chose 6 finalists:

Srinivasan Madhavan (Wichita High School East) – Implementing a Crosslink within Protective Antigen of Bacillus Anthracis, with Novel Implications in the Treatment of Anthrax

Luann Jung (Manhattan High) – Genomic Indicators of Type II Diabetes

Rachel Silverstein (Shawnee Mission West) – The use of homotypic natural killer (NK) cell NKG2D signaling in NK cell immunotherapy

Paul Case (Barstow) – Discovery of Two New Mutational Signatures in Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Lindsey Chavey (SMSD Biotechnology Program) – The development of an algorithm used to predict the predisposition to anterior cruciate ligament injury

Imaan Azeem (Olathe North) – Repurposing Metformin as a Preventative Drug for Breast Cancer Progression

 

Our Kansas BioGENEius finalists gathered at Aratana Therapeutics to present their research to our panel of industry judges on April 27th. After some excellent presentations and much deliberation, our judges selected Luann Jung from Manhattan High as the 2018 Kansas BioGENEius Challenge winner. This is Luann's second year competing at the Kansas BioGENEius Challenge Finals. The next step for Luann will be to compete in the International BioGENEius Challenge against other exceptional high school students at the 2018 BIO Convention in Boston.

 

March 27th, 2018
Congratulations to our winners from the Capitol Graduate Research Summit! BioKansas awarded our prizes to students with research projects that had a biotechnology focus with a potential for commercialization. Thank you to Labconco for sponsoring and to the Missouri Valley PDA for providing funds for their own pharmaceutical-focused award! Below are the names and schools of the winning students from left to right. 

Laura Constance - Kansas State University
Tugba Turnaoglu - University of Kansas
Cinthya Saldana - Emporia State University
Erika Nolte - University of Kansas (PDA Winner)
Shireen Usman - University of Kansas Medical Center
Ren Bean - Pittsburg State University (PDA Winner)
Sanket Bhoyate - Pittsburg State University
Kyle Schumacher - Fort Hays State University
Ali Adibi - Wichita State University

2018 Capitol Graduate Research Summit Winners



January 25th, 2018
Congratulations to our 2018 K-INBRE Poster Session Winners! These students showcased not only their excellent research and presentation skills, but the commercial ability of their work. Our 2018 winners are:

Everett Hall - University of Kansas Medical Center
DeKeysha Cooper - Washburn University
Ramanan Sivakumar - University of Kansas Medical Center
Jazmine Snow - Kansas State University
Claire Houchen - University of Kansas Medical Center
Jordyn Koehn - University of Kansas
Vaithish Velazhahan - Kansas State University
Elizabeth Goodrow - Washburn University
Rebekah Elliot - Pittsburg State University
Wesley Brantley &  Ren Bean - Pittsburg State University

2018 K-INBRE Poster Session Winners with BioKansas President & CEO, Dennis RIdenour