Last week SoCoBio students returned to Bangkok to the organisations that hosted them for an IPIPS (International professional internship for PhD students), to attend a conference held to showcase the achievements of three collaborative projects with Thailand’s National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (BIOTEC), King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi (KMUTT), the University of Kent and University College London (UCL) . In addition, two students received funding from the DTP’s flexible supplement fund to support outreach activities with 15-16 year old science-engineering students.
Over two days there was a press conference at the Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation, attended by 97 people, and a scientific symposium divided into aquaculture vaccines and the veterinary vaccines/ biopharma at a Bangkok hotel with 145 delegates.
4 SoCoBio students (Victoria Cheung, Isabella Garcia, Paige Policelli and Charlotte Bilsby) gave posters at both the press conference and symposium, on the projects they did as SoCoBio interns in Bangkok last year.
BIOTEC’s press release is here: https://www.biotec.or.th/home/en/kent-ucl-biotec-kmutt-celebrated/
Following the conference Paige and Isabella chose to complete some outreach with 15-16 year old science-engineering students to continue the cycle of knowledge exchange. They explained the process of higher education in the UK and the SoCoBio DTP programme to students, as well as their routes into academia. Then, using elements of their experience from their iPIPS placement they explained about what biotechnology is, it’s importance and how it is very advanced within Thailand.
To demonstrate the importance of biotechnology, Paige and Isabella lead a “Whodunit” activity, which taught the students about SDS-PAGE, Western Blotting which required students to develop a new biotechnology company to fight a deadly virus that is causing the population of London to turn into zombies! The students “successfully” developed new lateral flow tests to fight the new virus using donor antibodies.
Paige and Isabella thank Lalintip “Noon” Hocharoen and Jintana Wongta, for allowing them to conduct this outreach.