by Mike Masnick
Mon, Nov 19th 2007 12:12pm
There's definitely been a lot of talk lately about how biotech is the industry that's got the most promise to be "the next big thing." Whether you agree with that or not, it seems that some high schools want to prepare the next generation of students for biotech jobs, so they're actually offering biotech as a high school class. What may be most interesting here is the connection between the schools and actual biotech companies. This isn't just about learning about biotech, it's about interacting with companies in the space and understanding the business side of biotech, rather than just the technology (er... and biology). The hope, obviously, is to help make sure the next great biotech breakthroughs come from American companies -- and the best way to do that, supporters of these programs believe -- is to get high school kids thinking about and excited about biotech opportunities. Still, while it's surprising that there isn't more pushback (at least the article doesn't note any) about corporations reaching directly into high school classrooms, it seems like a reasonable thing to do in such an emerging area. A standard curriculum won't be all that useful in a rapidly changing arena -- and connecting with companies who are on the bleeding edge is likely to be a lot more educational in the long run anyway.