28 Sep 20 years after founding, MS in Biotech drives Wisconsin’s biosciences economy
In 2002, collaborators from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health and leading regional biotech companies, with support from then-Governor Tommy Thompson, launched the Master of Science in Biotechnology.
The wide-ranging curriculum in science, business, regulatory policy and law aimed to prepare students to succeed in the state’s nascent biotechnology industry.
Twenty years later, “Wisconsin has emerged as a powerhouse,” says Kurt Zimmerman, Master of Science in Biotechnology program director. “There was a significant investment made, with the promise there’d be an economic return to the state, along with the medical advances biotech offers. The state’s support made it possible for the MS in Biotechnology to launch very quickly, in a way that really matched the pace of progress happening in the field at that time.”
Today, the program continues to build Wisconsin’s biosciences industry, prepare students to drive the industry forward, establish strong industry partnerships and advance life-saving discoveries.
About two-thirds of the program’s graduates, who now number more than 400, have remained in Wisconsin, helping to build the biotech industry, working at established companies like Promega, Labcorp, Exact Sciences, Thermo Fisher Scientific, Aldevron, and Illumina, as well as startups.