MassBioEd Honors Champions for Biotechnology Education at Fifth Annual Awards Reception

Nov 16, 2020

November 16, 2020 (CAMBRIDGE, MA) — The Massachusetts Biotechnology Education Foundation (MassBioEd) is hosting its fifth annual Champions for Biotechnology Education Awards Reception on November 18th virtually to celebrate and recognize the outstanding advocacy for and support of biotechnology educational programs in Massachusetts. 2020 honorees include Camila Wendorff, a student at Framingham State University who transferred from MassBay Community College in September 2020, Sarah Goldberg, a biotechnology teacher at New Mission High School, East Boston High School, and Biogen.

“We are proud to recognize this year’s Champions for Biotechnology Education Awardees at our annual Champions Reception for their efforts to empower students to enter careers in the life sciences industry. It is more important now than ever for our community to continue to work together to ensure our industry and educators are supported as they work to meet the demands of patients and students in our communities,” Sunny Schwartz, Executive Director of MassBioEd, says.

MassBioEd will be awarding the first Henri A. Termeer Student Scholarship at the 2020 Reception to Camila Wendorff, an international student from Brazil who is pursuing her studies in Biology with a concentration in Biotechnology and a focus in cancer studies at Framingham State University. She demonstrated academic excellence and passion to mentoring other students in STEM throughout her time at MassBay Community College, where she transferred from this fall.

Chair and Co-Founder of The Termeer Foundation, Belinda Termeer, will present the Henri A. Termeer Student Scholarship Award, which comes with a $2,500 scholarship to be used towards tuition. “I am delighted to recognize the accomplishments of Camila Wendorff as the 2020 recipient of the Henri A. Termeer scholarship. My late husband, Henri Termeer, understood the need to support and encourage those young scientists who would provide the scientific knowledge and leadership that may lead to future research discoveries and medical breakthroughs.  This award, in conjunction with the work of MassBio Ed, offers a deserving junior scientist the opportunity to pursue their academic goals and a career in the life science industry.”

In 2019, the Henri A. Termeer Educator Grant was established to recognize dedicated life science teachers from Massachusetts schools who mentor their students in answering and more importantly, asking rich questions in the spirit of scientific excellence. Sarah Goldberg, a teacher at New Mission High School is this year’s recipient. She led the launch of the Career Technical Experience Pathway at New Mission, where she actively works to expose students to opportunities in laboratory research, increase the diversity of those who choose STEM careers, and prepare students to become the next generation of scientific leaders. These leaders are desperately needed to identify and address future challenges in biotechnology research. The MassBioEd Champion Teacher Award also provides a $2,500 grant to be used towards the purchase of equipment and supplies for life science education programs.

Chief Executive Officer of Sanofi Genzyme, Bill Sibold, and Robert Coughlin, Chief Executive Officer of MassBio will present the Henri A. Termeer Educator Award. “The remarkable work that Sarah has done at New Mission High School is changing the lives of diverse students by exposing them to opportunities in laboratory research and career experiences. This is critical to developing and sustaining a diverse, talented life sciences workforce in Massachusetts. I am privileged to present this Award in honor of Henri A. Termeer and his legacy of mentorship,” Bob Coughlin says.

Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development Rosalin Acosta will present the MassBioEd 2020 Champion Organization Award to Biogen, for its commitment to sparking a passion for science and discovery, supporting effective science education initiatives, and strengthening efforts to make science education and science careers accessible to diverse populations. The Award will be accepted by Kate Dawson, Senior Vice President, Therapeutics Development Unit and Chair of the Biogen Foundation and Chris Leibman, Senior Vice President, Value and Access. As one of the world’s first global biotechnology companies, Biogen discovers, develops, and delivers worldwide innovative therapies for people living with serious neurological and neurodegenerative diseases as well as related therapeutic adjacencies. The company is dedicated to inspiring the next generation of scientists through equitable access to STEM education. Biogen is driven not only by their commitment to patients but also their passion for harnessing the power of science to benefit humanity.

“Congratulations to Biogen in receiving the 2020 MassBioEd Champion Organization Award for their longstanding commitment to advancing innovative and equitable science while continuing to expand their efforts in STEM educational programming,” says Secretary Acosta.

Senator Joseph Boncore and Representative Adrian Madaro will present the 2019-2020 Joshua Boger Innovative School of the Year Award to East Boston High School, accepted by teachers of the Biotechnology department and Headmaster, Mr. Phillip Brangiforte. The Award was established in 2012 and is named in honor of Dr. Joshua Boger, a recognized biotech industry leader, patient advocate and champion for science education. East Boston High School will receive $5,000 to purchase equipment and supplies for life sciences education programs, funded by the Boger Family Foundation.

“Students at East Boston High School are developing the skills today to become the STEM leaders of tomorrow. This MassBioEd award recognizes how biotechnology learning has empowered and inspired East Boston High School students,” says Senator Joseph Boncore (First Suffolk & Middlesex District). “I also applaud Sarah Goldberg of New Mission High School for her commitment to education and her leadership to ensure that BPS students have access to STEM education.”

“I am honored that East Boston High School has been awarded the 2019-2020 BioTeach Innovative School of the Year Award. MassBioEd has been an essential partner in helping all teachers at East Boston High School learn biotechnology skills and incorporate biotechnology experiments into their classrooms. I am truly proud of the science educators at East Boston High School. Their teamwork, professional growth and dedication ensures all students in our school have access to authentic, rigorous science learning,” says Amanda Dillingham, Science Director at East Boston High School.

Creating meaningful experiences in the life sciences that excite, engage, and empower students is core to the mission of the science department at East Boston High School, where they believe that exposing students to rigorous authentic STEM experiences will help eliminate the opportunity gap that many of their students experience. Through multiple industry partnerships, East Boston High developed a recognized Biotechnology Career and Technical Education Pathway that enables them to teach students skills necessary to ensure success in college and future careers in science.

The event also raises funds for MassBioEd, an organization dedicated to developing the region’s life sciences workforce with a focus on expansion, opportunity, and diversity.

Sponsors for the reception include Biogen, Sanofi Genzyme, Alnylam, Takeda, Corcoran Jennison, Middlesex Gases and Technologies, MilliporeSigma, Pfizer, Richmond Group, Vertex Pharmaceuticals, Foundation Medicine, LaVoieHeathScience, Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, Propel Careers, Sunovion, Third Rock Ventures, Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Janitronics Building Services, Fisher Scientific, AIS, BioMed Realty, Corealis Pharma, Cummings Foundation, and J. Calnan & Associates.

There will be a virtual Networking Reception beginning at 5:30pm on November 18th followed by the virtual Awards Reception from 6pm to 7pm. If you are interested in attending, you can register for free or make a charitable donation in place of admission, here.

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 About the MassBioEd Foundation

The MassBioEd Foundation (MassBioEd) is a 501(c)(3) charitable non-profit organization. Its mission is to build a sustainable life sciences workforce in the region through educational programs that engage and excite teachers, inspire and propel students, and illuminate the pathway from the classroom to career with a focus on expansion, opportunity and diversity. Learn more: www.massbioed.org

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