With the holiday season in full swing, the team at the Temple Health & Bioscience District (THBD) has a lot to be thankful for. The strategic location of Temple, Texas, a health and life science hub in our region, has helped THBD achieve numerous advancements and networking connections in 2019 that will feed into success during 2020 and beyond.
This year in support of Central Texas’ growing biotech corridor, THBD traveled to three conferences. After networking at the TechConnect World Innovation Conference & Expo and MedTech (the leading Medical Device Conference), Executive Director Tami Annable attended BIOMEDevice.
As an exhibitor, THBD highlighted advancements made by current and alumni tenants, resources in Temple, Texas, and recruited companies to join in the growth of biotechnology in Central Texas. The benefits of living in Temple, Texas were stressed to all participants who stopped at the booth.
“BIOMEDevice provided a platform to interface with biotech startup companies seeking a supportive home for their budding ideas,” says Tami Annable, THBD Executive Director. “We were proud to showcase our city-supported, not-for-profit office and laboratory facility. From the latest laboratory equipment to mentorship and more, we have everything companies need to stay on the path to commercialization.”
As startups and entrepreneurs flock to Central Texas to utilize the bounty of health and medical resources housed in the area, THBD also focuses on the future of bioscience education and research.
In June, THBD approved $6,000 to fund three student projects researching zebra mussels in local area lakes. Under the direction of biology professors Dr. Kimberley Clawson, Dr. Philip Greco and Dr. Jason Locklin, students from Temple College Biological Research Institute are conducting studies on the invasive non-native species of Zebra Mussel present at Belton Lake and Stillhouse Hollow Lake. While hands-on research is a given during graduate-level education, it is often not a possibility for undergraduates. THBD is thankful for the opportunity to grant this experience to students in Temple, and to encourage a new generation of biologists.
In 2019, the organization provided direct education and training to eager students from Temple Independent School District’s International Baccalaureate program. Temple High School students visited the laboratory facility and learned proper pipetting techniques, received a physics lesson, watched a 3D printer in action and examined cancer cells under a microscope. THBD will continue to offer tours and laboratory instruction for students interested in Science Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) fields through fruitful partnerships with Temple’s and Belton’s school districts in 2020.
Tenant companies, supporters of THBD, and Temple Mayor Tim Davis each made an investment in the future of STEM fields this year during the inaugural class of the Temple Scholars Program. An elite internship available to STEM college students, Temple Scholars partners students with local STEM professionals to gain hands-on experience. THBD is pleased to once again extend the opportunity for research, education and career-setting experiences to college students in 2020 who will be 18 years of age by June 1, 2020. Applications are available at templebioscience.org and are due by February 15, 2020.
As we celebrate a year of achievement and firsts, we extend thanks to the community that supports and funds our mission. Temple, Texas is a wonderful place to call home, and we hope to inspire new waves of innovation and education for years to come.