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Scenes from The University of Rhode Island

URI Providence Campus to host informational session Mar. 3 on biotechnology manufacturing program

Media Contact: Todd McLeish, 401-874-7892

All students completing two semesters get $4,250 tuition reimbursement through Department of Labor

PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- February 23, 2005 -- Students interested in learning more about the growing field of biotechnology and the University of Rhode Island’s new biotechnology manufacturing program are invited to attend an informational session on Thursday, Mar. 3 at the URI Feinstein Providence Campus.

The sessions will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. in URI’s Paff Auditorium at 80 Washington Street, Providence.

Launched in 2003, the biotechnology manufacturing curriculum is an intensive bachelor’s degree program designed to prepare students to work in the growing field of biotechnology. Classes are held in Providence and begin with two semesters of full-time study followed by a summer internship at a biotech company in the area. Coursework includes biology, chemistry, biotechnology methods, computer science and math.

Following the internship, most students will go to work full-time in the industry at starting salaries of $35,000-$40,000 and complete their education as part-time students.

Every student who completes the first year of the program and is approved for an internship qualifies for $4,250 in tuition reimbursement – nearly 50 percent of the cost of tuition -- through a U.S. Department of Labor program that aims to train workers in new fields.

“This degree program has attracted students over a wide range of age and educational backgrounds, all having in common that they are enthusiastic about training for a new career,” said Dorothy Swift, co-coordinator of URI’s biotechnology manufacturing program. “Some have been laid off from other positions, some were working in jobs where there was little opportunity for advancement. Others are going back to college after raising children, leaving the military, or finding that this is a practical way to turn a long-term interest in biology, medicine or technology into a challenging and economically-viable career.”

For further information about the information sessions or URI’s biotechnology manufacturing program, call Swift at 277-5029.