Third Class of Stem Cell Biomanufacturing IGERT Trainees Selected

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Megan McDevitt

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Parker H. Petit Institute for Bioengineering & Bioscience

 

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The National Science Foundation (NSF) funded Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) program in Stem Cell Biomanufacturing announced its third class of Ph.D. student trainees. The five new graduate students come from a wide variety of disciplines including the School of Chemical and Biomolecular  Engineering, Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering and George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering.

“This grant provides a unique training opportunity for top engineering graduate students looking to understand how to control stem cells into clinically relevant numbers,” stated Todd McDevitt, PhD.

McDevitt, associate professor in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering is co-directing the IGERT program with Robert M. Nerem, professor emeritus of the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering at Georgia Tech.  McDevitt is also director of the Stem Cell Engineering Center which administers this award.

Recently highlighted by Nature magazine as one of the “out of the box” manufacturing educational programs in the country, the $3 million NSF-funded IGERT was awarded to Georgia Tech in 2010 to educate and train the first generation of Ph.D. students in the translation and commercialization of stem cell technologies for diagnostic and therapeutic applications.

The Stem Cell Biomanufacturing IGERT program supports new incoming Georgia Tech Ph.D. students for their first two years of graduate school. The program offers a core curriculum in stem cell engineering and bioprocessing coupled with elective tracks in advanced technologies, public policy, ethics or entrepreneurship.

“The current state of the field of stem cell research offers a unique opportunity for engineers to contribute significantly to the generation of robust, reproducible and scalable methods for phenotypic characterization, propagation, differentiation and bioprocessing of stem cells,” McDevitt added.

Trainees are afforded opportunities to meet with leading experts in the field who visit as part of the Stem Cell Engineering seminar series, attend the annual stem cell engineering workshop, participate in outreach activities and interact with representatives from leading companies during Georgia Tech’s annual Bio Industry Symposium.

Georgia Tech's Stem Cell Biomanufacturing IGERT award will support at least 30 graduate students over the 5 years of the award.


2012 Trainees

Olivia Burnsed - Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering

Efrain Cermeno - Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering

Albert Cheng - Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering

Jose Garcia - George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering

Emily Jackson - School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering


2011 Trainees

Tom Bongiorno – George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering

Rob Dromms – School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Devon Headen – Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering

Greg Holst – George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering

Torri Rinker – Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering

Shalini Saxena – School of Material Science & Engineering

Josh Zimmerman – Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering


2010 Trainees

Amy Cheng – George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering

Alison Douglas – Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering

Jennifer Lei – George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering

Douglas White – Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering

Jenna Wilson – Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering