• WisBusiness

Monday, April 10, 2006

 11:48 AM 

Wisconsin Has Continent's Top Biotech Teacher

Wisconsin is not only home to one of the top research universities in the country and elite stem cell scientists Jamie Thomson and Gabriela Cezar.

It can now claim the best biotechnology teacher in the United States and Canada.

Her name is Kathryn Eilert and she teaches biology and biotechnology at Middleton High School. She was named the Genzyme-Invitrogen National Biotech Educator of the Year for 2006 this weekend.

WisBusiness.com caught up with Eilert, who has been teaching for a dozen years, on the floor of the BIO 2006 convention today.

Eilert said most of her students are enthusiastic about the future of the life sciences.

"And so am I," said Eilert, who was visiting the Wisconsin pavilion. She also has attended BIO conferences in San Diego and Toronto.

"My students open the newspaper and see a lot of biotech in their own backyard," she said. "I think the future of bitoech in Wisconsin is great."

Eilert said it's her role to help grow the next generation of inovators and scientists.

"They are really into stem cells and the potential they hold for breakthroughs in medicine and science," she said.

Ironically, Eilert said many of her pupils want to leave Wisconsin to go to college.

"They know what a great research university UW-Madison is," she said. "But they want to try something different for college. It'd be nice to keep some of them here. And I hope there will be more good life science jobs to lure them back."

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