InvivoSciences Collaborates with Edgewood High School Students

InvivoSciences Collaborates with Edgewood High School Students

InvivoSciences is a local Biotechnology company that develops and commercializes technologies to mass-manufacture human tissue models for drug screening and personalized/regenerative medicine, providing customers rapid, cost-effective solutions/services to discover new therapies. This summer two Edgewood students Lauren Netzel (Edgewood High School Senior) and Audrey Netzel (Edgewood High School Graduate, class of 2012) worked with InvivoSciences to learn more about the Biotechnology industry and to see if this was a future career path they were interested in pursuing. InvivoSciences has been encouraging high school students in our community to pursue careers in Science, Technology and Entrepreneurship. In 2012 Obama lamented: “Growing industries in science and technology have twice as many openings as we have workers who can do the job. Think about that – openings at a time when millions of Americans are looking for work”[1]. Science, technology and entrepreneurship’s plays a prominent role in improving the quality of life in our communities. InvivoSciences believes in early science education of our youth as part of an essential process for filling the positions in growing high tech industries in Wisconsin.

InvivoSciences also understands the challenges women face in science and technology careers and has been an advocate for the inclusion of women in the full range of leadership roles being essential for the future healthy growth of the Biotech Industry in the United States. Encouraging women and girls to take part in science, technology, biotechnology and entrepreneurship would enable each state in the US to maximize its valuable human assets, empower its women, and improve its economic prosperity. The UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) has estimated that of the worlds total science researchers, only 27% are women [2].

During the State of the Union Address President Obama stated, “The development of world-class talent in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) is critical to America’s global leadership. The Obama Administration understands that fostering an open and diverse scientific community that draws from an array of unique experiences and viewpoint is a necessary step to realizing this goal. The United States needs to increase the opportunities for women in these fields of study; it is an important step towards realizing greater economic success and equality for women across the board” [3]. InvivoSciences encourages all young students and specifically girls to consider STEM careers and seek available opportunities in our community for high school and college students to study science. According to the National Science Board, “In 2010, about 11% of freshmen intended to major in each of the following disciplines: biological/agricultural sciences, social/behavioral sciences and engineering” [4]. Within that 11% the Board found that, “Women earned a minority of the bachelor’s degrees awarded in engineering (18%), computer sciences (18%), and physics (19%)” [4]. InvivoSciences is just one of the Madison based biotechnology companies that advocates engaging women in science related jobs through internships like Lauren and Audrey experienced. The key to create the future we desire in Wisconsin are the families, communities, school teachers, academic supervisors, mentors of women scientists, entrepreneurs and the women scientists themselves.

CEO Ayla Annac said, “We are impressed with the quality, ethics and passions of the two Edgewood High School students this summer. They have shown a great eagerness to learn about the start-up environment and biotechnology.”

“The goal of Edgewood’s unique K-16 science program is to forge relationships between the three schools of Edgewood and community partners such as InvivoSciences. These relationships create a context for sharing expertise and resources which benefit us all. We are so fortunate to have in InvivoSciences as such a visionary and generous community partner. We look forward to many more opportunities to celebrate student accomplishments.” Amy Schiebel, Associate Professor and K-16 Science Director at Edgewood College.

InvivoSciences has developed an assay system with engineered tissue-based compound screening technology, including their PalpatorTM device and connective tissue constructs fabricated in MC96TM. The ready-to-use tissues and assay platforms produced by InvivoSciences provide three-dimensional (3D) geometrics and physical environments for cells, bridging the gap between cell-based systems and isolated organ tissue systems or animal models by mimicking the functions of living organisms, specifically those of humans.

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