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Biocon Academy Alumni Day Meet throws up insights into future of biotech industry

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Over 100 graduates of the Academy attended the Alumni Day celebrations to reminisce and relive the fun days they had spent in their alma mater.

Interesting insights into the transformative economic impact of biotechnology came out of a discussion held during the Alumni Day celebrations of Biocon Academy, a Centre of Excellence for Advanced Biosciences Learning, a CSR initiative of Biocon. The application of contemporary biotechnology in areas such as lifestyle management, entrepreneurial opportunities in the sector, its potential to offer a range of differentiated and specialised products and services for consumers in India and overseas etc we also discussed at the event.

Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Chief Mentor, Biocon Academy and CMD, Biocon, and Dr Sheldon Schuster, President, Keck Graduate Institute, California, discussed the new trends in global life sciences world which were opening up research opportunities in India and abroad, leading to closer industry-academia collaborations and driving demand for high-end talent. These two speakers shared their stories of challenges and success and motivated the students with several leadership lessons.

Addressing the alumni, Shaw said, “To exploit the potential of biotechnology we need scientists, thinkers and innovators. Through Biocon Academy we are enabling young minds to be curiosity driven and out-of-the-box thinkers to partake in the journey of transforming India through the power of biotechnology. I am excited to see this bunch of young and passionate graduates who have made a right choice to opt for a specialised course to make a difference in life sciences.”

Dr Schuster said, “It was a wonderful opportunity to meet the alumni of the unique Biocon-KGI certificate program, which we have been successfully running in India over the past three years. I am proud of the contribution that the program is making towards enriching the life sciences ecosystem in India by producing highly skilled bioscientists. I am confident that these bright young men and women who have graduated from the Biocon Academy will contribute immensely to the global life sciences industry through their knowledge, talent and passion.”

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Musical performance by students to entertain their seniors

The programme kicked off with a discussion on ‘Innovative Knowledge Era and What’s Up in Biotechnology’. The panel comprised Dr Jitendra Kumar, Managing Director, Bangalore Bioinnovation Centre (BBC); Amit Chopra, Managing Director, Thermo Fisher Scientific, India; Dr Pratima Khandelwal, Professor and Head, Dept of Biotechnology, New Horizon College of Engineering; and Dr Suman Kapur, Dean, International Programmes and Collaboration Division and Senior Professor in Department of Biological Sciences, BITS, Pilani (Hyderabad Campus). The panelists spoke about the new science of Nutrigenomics, which signals the approaching era of personalised nutrition along with existing personalised medicines! Food safety, food security and the role of industry, academia and government in tapping these emerging opportunities also came up for discussion.

Over 100 graduates of the Academy attended the Alumni Day celebrations to reminisce and relive the fun days they had spent in their alma mater. The celebrations hit a nostalgic note when the alumni shared their memories of the golden days spent at the Academy.

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