Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE) will offer a Bachelor of Science degree in BioMolecular Engineering in Fall 2009. MSOE is the first and only university in the state of Wisconsin to offer this degree, which has been made possible through a personal gift of $6 million from Drs. Robert and Patricia Kern and their daughters.
“Our new BioMolecular Engineering degree is being offered in direct response to industry needs,” said Dr. Hermann Viets, president of MSOE. “BioMolecular Engineers are needed in the biological, health care, food and medical industries, to name a few. The hands-on education and experiences our students receive will make them highly sought-after by employers and graduate schools.”
“The coming time is the BIOTIME … actually we are already living in it,” said Dr. Gul Afshan, associate professor in the Physics and Chemistry Department and BioMolecular Engineering program architect at MSOE. “BioMolecular Engineers are going to be truly the universal engineers of the future, capable of working all over the world in a wide range of roles and industries.”
MSOE is creating several new state-of-the-art laboratories, a cell culture facility and other exciting resources for the high-tech Bachelor of Science in BioMolecular Engineering program.
“We are please to support MSOE’s efforts and be part of this exciting new program,” said Dr. Robert Kern, MSOE Regent.
BioMolecular Engineers develop new products, processes and techniques, and provide solutions for medical, food, environmental and technical problems. They can find employment in clinical settings, hospitals, government and private sector, research, industry, agriculture, engineering and management positions. BioMolecular Engineers can work in a wide range of organizations, such as those involved in:
· Biodiagnostic tools (DNA, RNA, proteins, enzymes)
· Biopharmaceuticals and therapeutics
· Smart drugs development
· Biochemicals, petrochemicals, cosmetics and textiles
· Food scarcity/droughts, crops and agriculture
· Biofuels, energy and electronics
· Biosecurity, biodetection industry management
· Research and development
The annual starting salary range for BioMolecular Engineers is $55,000-$60,000. Those with specialized skills like bioinformatics, cell culture or protein design may start in the range of $60,000-$70,000 per year. Having a MSOE degree in BioMolecular Engineering also will prepare students for medical, veterinary and graduate schools at top universities.
The Curriculum and Laboratories
Students will take courses in the foundation sciences of chemistry, physics and biology. This emphasis of biology, chemistry and engineering at the molecular scale will enable graduates to be involved in product and process development – from the molecular and nano-scales to large-scale processes. In concert, students at MSOE will be educated in the essential BioMolecular Engineering models of design of biomolecules, bioinformatics and thermodynamics essential to solving complex engineering problems.
Electives may be chosen from areas such as forensics biology, nanotechnology, and biofuels in the future. Graduates will be prepared for careers in the biotechnology, pharmaceutical, bioinformatics and other such industries and for graduate, medical, law or business school.
Students will conduct bench-scale experiments involving the growth and genetic manipulation of cells, measurements on proteins and DNA, engineering of biomolecules such as cutting, joining and amplifying DNA, linking biomolecules to solid surfaces and separating and purifying them. Techniques like biodiagnostics, ultra-fast polymerase chain reaction, point mutation, the bioinformatics for genome and proteome analysis and bioprobing and bioanalysis through atomic force microscope and electron microscope, respectively, also will be taught in the laboratories.
About the Kern Family
Drs. Robert and Patricia Kern founded Generac Power Systems of Waukesha, Wis. in 1959 out of their garage with one employee, and grew it into a 2,000-person operation with a number of facilities in Wisconsin, the Midwest and overseas. The company produces generators for industrial and consumer markets. The Kerns sold the business in 2006. They are longtime supporters of MSOE and benefactors of MSOE’s scholarship programs. Robert Kern has served the university as a member of the Board of Regents since 1992 and holds an Honorary Doctor of Engineering. Patricia Kern holds an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from MSOE.
MSOE is an independent university with about 2,600 students. MSOE offers 18 bachelor’s degrees and 10 master’s degrees in the engineering, engineering technology, architectural engineering and building construction, computer, business and health-related fields.
Director of Media Relations, MSOE
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Milwaukee, WI 53202