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Amgen Foundation invests $4 million in the Amgen Biotech Experience

Posted: 22 October 2015 | Victoria White

The Amgen Biotech Experience was designed to inspire the next generation of innovators and give school students the opportunity to experience real science…

The Amgen Foundation is to invest more than $4 million to support and strengthen the Amgen Biotech Experience programme across the UK, the US, Puerto Rico and Ireland.

The Amgen Biotech Experience includes an engaging series of labs that effectively bring biotechnology into classrooms. With the support of Education Development Centre (EDC), the global non-profit leading the Amgen Biotech Experience Programme Office, the investment is expected to empower 1,000 teachers who will reach more than 150,000 new students with the labs over the next two years.

“We are very excited to extend our commitment to the Amgen Biotech Experience, a programme that began 25 years ago, with the intent to ignite a deep passion for innovation and scientific discovery in students,” said Robert A. Bradway, chairman and chief executive officer of Amgen. “This programme, which provides advanced biotech curriculum and professional-grade lab equipment at no cost to schools, has opened countless students’ eyes to the world of biotechnology, fueling potential long term advancements to both medicine and society.”

The Amgen Biotech Experience labs were designed by Amgen scientists and educators to inspire the next generation of innovators and give high school biology students the opportunity to experience real science at their fingertips. The Amgen Biotech Experience does this by providing science teachers with advanced training, curriculum and research-grade equipment, allowing them to run labs in their classrooms that incorporate the core technologies used by the biotech industry in the discovery of human therapeutics. With the help of secondary school teachers inside and outside the United States, 72,000 students across Amgenregions participated in the labs this past year.

Lighting fires

“When teaching the Amgen Biotech Experience, you might just light a fire in a student that didn’t think they could do science before, and that kid could solve a problem that we desperately need an answer to. That’s pretty powerful,” said Winnie Litten, a teacher at Oak Park High School, California. Wendy Wooten, a teacher at Reseda High School, California, added, “The Amgen Biotech Experience gives students the confidence that they belong in science.” This innovative, hands-on approach to science is continuing to demystify science for students, inspiring many to pursue science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) degrees in college.

“We’re pleased with the Amgen Biotech Experience’s continued growth,” says David Offensend, president and chief executive officer at EDC. “This programme helps give students a real-world, hands-on lab experience to introduce them to the excitement of biotechnology and scientific discovery.”

Since the programme’s inception in 1990, the Amgen Biotech Experience has reached more than 425,000 students and today’s announcement brings the total Amgen Foundation investment in the programme to more than $13 million.

Visit www.amgenbiotechexperience.com to learn more about the Amgen Biotech Experience.

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