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Biogen Idec Foundation Announces $1 Million Gift to North Carolina Biotechnology Center

September 9, 2009 Corporate

“Transformational Grant” to Support K-12 Science Education"

 

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. & RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK (RTP), N.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Biogen Idec Foundation today announced it has awarded a $1 million Transformational Grant in Science Education to the North Carolina Biotechnology Center to support the expansion of the Center’s educational training facility for K-12 science teachers. The grant is part of the Biogen Idec Foundation’s new Transformational Grants in Science Education initiative. The Foundation has awarded approximately $1.5 million in transformational grants since the program was initiated in 2008.

“The Biogen Idec Foundation’s primary mission is to encourage innovative approaches to the teaching of science at the middle and high-school levels,” said Craig Schneier, Ph.D., Chair of the Foundation and Biogen Idec’s Executive Vice President of Human Resources, Public Affairs and Communications. “Since its incorporation in 2003, the Foundation has awarded almost $10 million in grants for science education and community service. Last year, we initiated a Transformational Grants program to encourage organizations to undertake major new transformational initiatives that would reinvigorate the way science is taught in the United States. We are delighted to make this major grant to the North Carolina Biotechnology Center, which has played such a leading role in educating the workforce in North Carolina.”

Norris Tolson, President and CEO of the NC Biotechnology Center, commented, “The Biogen Idec Foundation has shown the strategic thinking and bold action that define leaders. Their generous contribution will help extend our support for the life-science community, creating new opportunities and paying dividends well into the future. The gift also makes two points crystal clear: North Carolina is a world leader in biotechnology, and the North Carolina Biotechnology Center is central to the industry’s long-term prospects in our state. We are delighted to partner with the Biogen Idec Foundation and honored to receive its help in developing biotechnology as an engine for job creation and wealth generation.”

Since 1992, more than 1,400 K-12 science teachers have attended biotechnology educator training programs at the Center, and more than 90 percent of attendees have utilized biotechnology-based lesson plans following their workshops. Located in RTP, the Center was established in 1984 to help the state make the transition from traditional industries of tobacco, furniture manufacturing and textiles to a technology-based economy. The Biogen Idec Foundation grant will be paid in $200,000 annual installments over five years.

The Biogen Idec Foundation has awarded three other transformational grants in science education:

  • $300,000 to the East End House in Cambridge, Massachusetts, for the GENASAS (Generating and Evaluating New Adventures in Science After School) program, a holistic, strength-based approach to engaging youth in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.
  • $50,000 to The Reuben H. Fleet Science Center in San Diego, California, to support a four-part workshop for high-school teachers and students designed to increase teachers’ understanding of inquiry-based methodology as it applies to the life sciences.
  • $60,000 to the Contemporary Science Center in Durham, NC for the creation of a community learning laboratory for hands-on education of high-school science students.

In addition to the transformational grant program, the Foundation has undertaken a micro-grants program in support of science education projects that might otherwise go unfunded, such as field trips and laboratory supplies. More than $50,000 in micro-grants will be awarded this year through the Cambridge (MA) Community Foundation, the Triangle (NC) Community Foundation and the San Diego (CA) Foundation.

About the Biogen Idec Foundation

The mission of the Biogen Idec Foundation is to improve the quality of people’s lives and contribute to the vitality of the communities where we operate, with a special emphasis on innovative ways to promote science literacy and encourage young people to consider science careers.

About Biogen Idec

Biogen Idec creates new standards of care in therapeutic areas with high unmet medical needs. Founded in 1978, Biogen Idec is a global leader in the discovery, development, manufacturing, and commercialization of innovative therapies. Patients in more than 90 countries benefit from Biogen Idec's significant products that address diseases such as lymphoma, multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis. For product labeling, press releases and additional information about the company, please visit www.biogenidec.com. In RTP, the company operates a large-scale manufacturing facility, customer service operation, and employs approximately 850 people.

About the North Carolina Biotechnology Center

The North Carolina Biotechnology Center is a private, non-profit corporation supported by the NC General Assembly. Its mission is to provide long-term economic and societal benefits to North Carolina by supporting biotechnology research, business, education and strategic policy statewide.

 

Contact:

 

Biogen Idec Media Contact:
Mike McBrierty, 919-993-6368
Senior Manager, Public Affairs
or
Amy Reilly, 617-914-6524
Associate Director, Public Affairs
or
Biogen Idec Investor Relations Contact:
Eric Hoffman, 617-679-2812
Director, Investor Relations

 

 

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