Recipients of NH BioMade Educational Grants

The NH BioMade Educational Grant program aims to fund curriculum or training enhancements that will attract, train, and retain a more diverse biomaterials, bioengineering, and bio-related advanced manufacturing workforce. The NH BioMade team has talked to local industry leaders and has identified skills gaps within core areas related to NH BioMade research: computational modelingadvanced manufacturingbiomaterials and bioprocessing, as well as foundational work skills.

 

2022

NH CLIMBS UP

NH CLIMBS Up (Collaborative Learning through industry Internships and academic Mentorship in Biotech for Students Upscaling the workforce) focuses on skills and workforce development for evolving advanced manufacturing industries by providing mentorship, education options, industry interactions and a unique one-week training. CLIMBS UP is a pilot project to address skills gaps identified by advanced manufacturing and tissue engineering companies. Specifically, these companies see a skills gap in engineering applicants who need to understand cell culture and the environment of living cells and life science applicants who need to understand basic engineering practices. Students from the community college system of NH with majors in engineering technology and life science will learn the connections between the two disciplines in a week-long January term course. Industry speakers and visits in the Millyard during the week will increase career awareness of biotechnology and advanced manufacturing opportunities. UNH Career and Professional Services will advise students how to prepare for a job search and the Student Activities Office will recruit student mentors to support community college students as potential transfer students in conjunction with presentations on financial aid and admission to a 4-year institution. Led by UNH Manchester Life Science/Biotechnology Assistant Professor Kristen Johnson and Biotechnology Innovation Center Scientific Training Director, Mary Stewart. 

ESSENTIALS OF CELL CULTURE – A HANDS-0N LEARNING MODULE FOR UNDERGRADUATES

Keene State College plans to expand undergraduate biology coursework with NH BioMade educational seed funding. The module, Essentials of Cell Culture, will address some of the foundational concepts in cell culture while providing a historical perspective of the development of the field in the last century. 

Students will receive training in essential techniques such as media preparation, thawing and freezing cells, splitting and transferring cells, cell counting and measurement of cell growth efficiencies. Advanced students will get the opportunity to do individual cellular bioassays to test their own unique hypothesis within the scope of the course. 

Completion of the module will provide students with: 1) a working knowledge of maintaining and working with mammalian cell lines that can supplement and/or facilitate interests in advanced courses such as 3D bioprinting and biofabrication; 2) experience in working with aseptic conditions under controlled environments and strict adherence to protocols for replicability and repeatability of results; and 3) familiarity with modern cell culture practices and cellular bioassays that are routinely used and desired in bioscience industrial research and job opportunities. Led by Biology Assistant Professor Pryantha Chowdhury.

THE MICRO IN THE MACRO – LEVERAGING FOUNDATIONAL MICROBIOLOGY CURRICULUM TO INTRODUCE MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS TO BIOMANUFACTURING

Keene State College developed and implemented curriculum for an immersive middle school one week summer camp experience at Keene State College focusing on foundational microbiology as a gateway to biomanufacturing. Building from a previous successful pilot camp offered in 2019, Keene State offered a summer 2022 one-week immersive wet lab experience in microbiology for middle school students that expanded from fundamental microbiology skills into the use of a 3D printer and the cultivation of microbes in formats that provide an introduction to 3D bioprinting. Students learned fundamental microbiology and chemistry skills (media preparation, cultivation, observation, documentation) with the inclusion of an introduction to bioprinting. Macro in the Micro introduced middle school science students to concepts in a bioprinting course and research led by collaborator Dr. Habib (funded by NH EPSCoR Biomade). The one-week camp, Science Explorers – Into the Microworld, was available to middle school students in grades 6 – 8. Led by Biology Professor Loren Launen.

2021

A PROPOSAL TO BUILD CAREER PATHWAYS INTO THE BIOTECHNOLOGY INDUSTRY

The main objective of this project was to create career pathways for students of varying skill-levels to the world of biotechnology. Windham High School acquired a bioprinter to launch the start of a larger program for students to understand biotechnology career opportunities for a broad range of students. Based on the concept of The Ghostly Heart, a stem cell concept that refers to the de-celling and re-celling of an organ, a hands-on curriculum for three different grade-levels that uses safe chemicals and bright colors in coordination with the bioprinter. The bioprinter generates the mold of an organ while an activity with agar, phenolphthalein and a very low molar sodium hydroxide solution would demonstrate how stem cells can grow on the mold to create a functioning organ. Long-term goals include sharing how-to lessons using the bioprinter with other educators, and creating a Biotechnology course at the high school. Led by Karalyn Gauvin, Biology teacher at Windham High School.

DESIGNING 3D PRINTED WIND TURBINES TO LEARN ABOUT SPEED, FORCE AND POWER

Wakefield, NH, seventh and eighth grade science students had the opportunity to design and test different wind turbine designs to learn about rapid prototyping, additive manufacturing using a fused deposition modeling (FDM) 3D printer, computer aided design and the engineering design process. Students began with a pre-project survey, an introduction to energy and wind turbines and instruction on the engineering design process. Using 3D computer aided design (CAD) software, students used an engineering notebook to describe the engineering process and test and adjust several variables of their wind turbine blades. Once data was collected, students presented their data and recommendations via poster or slide shows. According to pre and post survey data, the project had a positive effect on the students’ understanding of STEM, 3D printing, problem solving, and critical thinking skills. Students reported that after this project, they were more likely to use problem solving skills and critical thinking skills in school. Led by Science teacher Gavin Kearns at the Paul School in Wakefield, NH.

NH BIOMADE GRADUATE STUDENT ORGANIZATION (GSO): ALL-DAY WORKSHOP, MANUFACTURING MONTH STEM OUTREACH AND INDUSTRY MIXER EVENTS

The NH BioMade GSO grant centered around three events: an all-day workshop, Manufacturing Month STEM outreach, and industry mixer events. The all-day workshop gathered graduate students to meet, introduce new students to ongoing projects, allowed for scientific presentations, and promoted access to mental health and professional development sources. The Manufacturing Month STEM outreach event, held at both the University of NH and Dartmouth, provided local middle school students with an opportunity to learn about 3D printing techniques from both engineers and chemists. The industry mixer promoted better facilitation of ideas and research between members of industry and academia and helped to move New Hampshire to the forefront of biomaterials research. Led by Elizabeth Mamros, doctoral student in mechanical engineering at UNH.

2020

ADVANCING BIOMADE INDUSTRY CAREER AMBITIONS AND SKILLS (ABICAS)

ABICAS project was designed to increase secondary school students’ awareness of the BioMade industry, increase student motivation to learn more about cutting-edge science and improve workforce skills needed for the industry to succeed. The project began to address the need for middle/high school teachers and students to learn about cutting-edge developments in the biofabrication industry and advance the development of the critical skills for success through project-based opportunities with adult mentors. Grade area teacher teams who reflected diverse student populations in rural, suburban, and urban environments, developed a promotional video (Career Awareness Presentations -CAPs) to advance student interests, an application template for students to propose their own project interests, and sample projects that allow for flexible implementation for districts across NH and nationally. Students that proposed projects were matched with industry mentors to assist student access to industry experts and to receive feedback on the students’ ideas and follow-through with the projects. Student applications mirrored Extended Learning Opportunities (ELOs), which are embedded as part of the curriculum in many NH high schools. Fifteen teachers across the secondary grade spans reached 235 students of which 33% were identified as rural/low income and 17% identified as Hispanic. Led by Science teacher Devin Helmke, Sanborn Regional School District.

BIOTECH BOXES AND BAGGED LABS

Milford School District’s project funded a series of different boxes or “labs in a bag” assembled and then distributed to and rotated around between students in response to remote learning during the pandemic. The traveling lab kits utilized existing lab equipment, and purchases funded from Milford’s Local School Budget and the ATC’s Perkins V grant. NH BioMade Seed funds supported the acquisition of miniPCRs and BlueGel Electrophoresis equipment. Students conducted experiments extracting DNA form their own hair samples, followed by PCR and gel electrophoresis to study population level data through Hardy-Weinberg equations. Another experiment used restriction enzymes on plasmid to map fragments. The lab bags and experiments were a part of new course, Biotechnology II, which covered academic, technical, and real work knowledge, skills and experiences students need to be prepared for a variety of career options in biotechnology and bio manufacturing. Led by Maryanne Rotelli, CTE Biology Instructor, Milford School District.

MRI to 3D PRINTING - AN UNDERGRADUATE LEARNING MODULE

The project “MRI to 3DPrinting - An Undergraduate Learning Module” goal was to develop a course to increase career awareness through experiential learning in advanced manufacturing and biomanufacturing and 3D printing. Deliverables include developing learning outcomes, creating lesson plans, organizing classroom activities, and listing equipment and supplies needed. This one-year project is aligned with Research Thrust 3: Scaffolds for Tissue Regeneration. Course (SPDI 399): Biofabrication is offered at Keene State College. Led by MD Ahasan Habib, Ph.D., assistant professor of Sustainable Product Design and Architecture, Keene State College.

2019

INTRODUCTION TO BIOTECHNOLGY HIGH SCHOOL COURSE DEVELOPMENT

Pinkerton Academy developed a course designed for high school students to expose them to concepts and content utilized in bioengineering. This introductory high school elective course focuses mostly on cellular level bioengineering, while concepts in biochemistry, cell culture, and genetic modification of bacteria are also covered. In the project development, quality performance assessments were designed and reviewed by the lead teacher of the science department and enduring understandings and essential questions developed and were reviewed by the curriculum coordinator. NH BioMade Seed funds provided new science lab materials and equipment. Thirty-five students were enrolled in the course. Overall, the course development process led to an enrichment of life science course offerings benefiting all students at Pinkerton Academy. Led by Kyle Plante, Science teacher, Pinkerton Academy, Derry, NH.

BIOMADE TEACHERS INSTITUTE TO DESIGN CURRICULA FOR GRADES 6-12

The BioMade Teachers Institute goal was to develop a two-week summer institute for 10 teachers and offer three Tech Camp programs related to NH BioMade. Programs and training institutes aligned with Next Generation Science Standard with life science and physical science performance expectations. The project underwent significant adjustments due to COVID and the acquisition of an NIH Education Partnership Award to support this mission. NH BioMade seed funds supported teachers and students in the NIH EPA project, NH CREATES the Future: The New Hampshire Collaborative for Regenerative Medicine Education and Training for Engineers and Scientists of the Future. Teachers and four students traveled to Boston University where they learned to use detergent to decellularize spinach leaves and E. coli bacteria to be a certain color. They used the colored bacteria to recellularize the spinach leaf scaffolds. Led by Carmela Amato-Wierda, Ph.D., Associate Professor Materials Science, UNH Durham, NH.

INTRODUCTION TO BIOFABRICATION CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT

UNH Manchester developed an Intro to Biofabrication course: a project-based course with training in CAD and 3D printing and other manufacturing fundamentals.

UNH Manchester partnered with the Advanced Regenerative Manufacturing Institute (ARMI) to advance new techniques in biomanufacturing. NH BioMade Seed funds financed curriculum development and equipment purchases for the creation of BSCI 510: Introduction to Biofabrication at UNH, a project-based course with training in Computer Aided Design (CAD), 3D printing and other manufacturing fundamentals.  Two local Manchester biotechnology businesses established relationships with UNH Manchester for site visits related to the course: United Therapeutics and Advanced Solutions. A portion of the grant funds purchased two DLP 3D printers and associated materials. Eleven college students registered in the initial course offering in 2020 and the course was offered again in spring 2022. Led by Donald Plante, Senior Lecturer, Mathematics, UNH Manchester.

MILFORD CTE STEAM NIGHTS

Milford High School and Applied Technology Center used funds to partially support and expand their already existing STEAM night events to include biomanufacturing, biotechnology, and industry participation.

In February 2020, Milford High School hosted STEAM night activities for 119 elementary and middle school students. A total of 21 high school, elementary school, administrative and support personnel volunteered and to offer 12 different workshops. Local companies participated promoting STEM Education and STEM careers. Led by Vaso Partinoudi, Past CTE Director, Milford High School.