Friday, March 27, 2015

Troy: Riverfront P-TECH Students Board the BioBus


Troy Riverfront Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH) students recently gained hands-on lab research experience through a visit from the BioBus, a lab on wheels operated by Cell Motion Laboratories, an educational nonprofit organization based in New York City.

Troy Riverfront P-TECH is one of only 16 programs of its kind in the state. The Troy Riverfront P-TECH program puts high school students on a direct career path to the region’s most in-demand fields including technology, biotechnology and advanced manufacturing.
As a result of taking a combination of high school and college-level courses, P-TECH students will earn 20-30 college credits before they graduate high school. College-level courses are focused on the most heavily demanded skills from the fastest-growing fields — all with the support of a team of teachers, counselors and industry professionals.

Students will also have job shadow and internship opportunities at participating companies. Students will explore careers and see firsthand how their academic studies apply to the real world.

Troy Riverfront P-TECH is a partnership of Troy city schools, Questar III BOCES, Hudson Valley Community College, the Center for Economic Growth, GE Healthcare, Simmons Machine Tool Corporation and Regeneron.

The BioBus is a 1974 GMC Transit bus equipped with $100,000 worth of research-grade microscopes normally found in top-tier laboratories and staffed by Ph.D. scientists. Thanks to a sponsorship by P-TECH partner Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, P-TECH students had the opportunity to observe microorganisms and work through lab activities with research scientists.

Since the first students boarded the BioBus in 2008, the bus has been on the road teaching for 800 days, giving 115,000 people at more than 420 schools and communities the opportunity to work side by side with professional scientists and explore their environment.

Almost every day of the school year, the BioBus parks in front of a school, giving students that board the chance to use a phase-contrast video microscope to make movies of crawling amoeba, to use a scanning electron microscope to image a fly's eye, and to visualize glowing, streaming plant chloroplasts using a fluorescence microscope. The students work alongside the former research scientists that form the BioBus regular staff as well as volunteers ranging from students from local colleges and universities to Nobel Prize winner Martin Chalfie to Bill Nye “the Science Guy.”

Regeneron is a leading science-based biopharmaceutical company based in Tarrytown, N.Y. that discovers, invents, develops, manufactures and commercializes medicines for the treatment of serious medical conditions. Regeneron commercializes medicines for eye diseases, colorectal cancer and a rare inflammatory condition, and has product candidates in development in other areas of high unmet medical need, including hypercholesterolemia, oncology, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma and atopic dermatitis.

--Jennie Grey

 --Please note my new contact information below--

Education reporter
The Saratogian and The Record newspapers
20 Lake Ave.
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
Office: 518-290-3898
Work cell: 518-222-2109
Blog: "Extra Credit: Education News from Around the Region":

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