Sydney-based federal government MP John Alexander has joined students at Carlingford High School participating in the Amgen Biotech Experience (ABE).
The ABE is a science education program that offers high school students hands-on biotech lab experience.
It is delivered as an in-class initiative that provides professional development for teachers as well as materials and research-grade equipment to classrooms to help educate students about the concepts and techniques scientists use to discover and develop medicines.
The program was launched in Australia in 2017 through a partnership between The Amgen Foundation and The University of Sydney.
Senior Biology students and members of the science club at Carlingford High are currently taking part in the program that has already reached over 3,000 students. Amgen said the program is on track to engage a total of 5,000 students and 60 teachers in New South Wales in its first three years.
According to Carlingford High School science teacher, Vanessa Gibbens, “Programs like the Amgen Biotech Experience, offered free of charge to schools, not only help us teach part of the HSC Biology curriculum but can give our younger students a greater understanding of how science influences their daily lives.
“With so many jobs of the future projected to require STEM knowledge and skills, we’re constantly looking for ways to engage our students in these subjects and inspire them to learn more. This program does exactly that and it’s a thrill to see our students open their eyes to a whole new world of discovery.”
Bennelong MP John Alexander said, “Governments are investing in improving STEM education but lifting student engagement and attainment in STEM and supporting teachers to improve student outcomes is a huge undertaking.
“Evidence-based programs like the Amgen Biotech Experience are a wonderful example of the support that can come from the private sector, and I commend Amgen for their commitment to this program and the staff at Carlingford High for making it available to students in our local area.”
The Amgen Biotech Experience has been in place for more than 30 years and currently operates in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong SAR, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Puerto Rico, Singapore, United Kingdom and United States.
Amgen said the company's foundation had committed more than US$25 million to deliver the program globally to approximately 700,000 students - over 88,000 students and 1,500 science teachers now participating annually.