Ted Kaufman - United States Senator for Delaware

Sen. Kaufman addresses life sciences networking event

Source: UDaily

By Laura Crozier

October 10, 2010

The Delaware Biotechnology Institute (DBI) and the Delaware BioScience Association  co-hosted the first Delaware Life Sciences Professionals networking event on Oct. 7 in DBI's facilities in Newark. The guest speaker was U.S. Senator Ted KAUFMAN (D-Del.).
The Delaware Life Sciences Professionals events are a result of the efforts of DBI's director, Kelvin Lee, and vice president of global assay development at Siemens Healthcare Diagnostics, Ian Wright.

“At the University of Delaware, we've been working on programs to foster career development of postdoctoral scientists in the life sciences field,” said Lee. “Coupled with Ian's idea to support young scientists and engineers in the area, we created the environment for these people to meet, share common experiences and even explore new opportunities in their careers.”

The format for the event will differ each time to keep things interesting, switching between hosting a distinguished guest, to giving a tour of state-of-the-art laboratories and facilities, or even conducting a community service project. But the goal will remain the same -- to provide a networking opportunity and support system for young, local scientists and engineers.

To kick off the first event on Thursday, KAUFMAN, the only engineer in the U.S. Senate, spoke to a crowd of about 50 life science students and scientists about the importance of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education for students and teachers.

“I truly believe, now more than ever -- whether it is energy independence, global health, homeland security, or infrastructure challenges -- STEM professionals will be at the forefront of the most significant issues of our time,” said KAUFMAN. “STEM-educated graduates will hold the jobs of the future.”

According to a Georgetown University Center for Education and the Workforce study, companies with a focus on science, technology, engineering and math will create 2.8 million new jobs by 2018.

The evening began with a congratulatory announcement about the winner of the 2010 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Richard F. Heck, retired professor in UD's Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry.

Heck, Willis F. Harrington Professor Emeritus, was honored for his work in creating palladium-catalyzed reactions that make the synthesis of even very large and complex organic chemicals possible. The work has had tremendous impact in biotechnology on everything from the synthesis of medicines to sunscreen and to the ability to characterize a genome.

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