£67m boost for future bioscientists

February 15th, 2012

The University of Nottingham is to share in a £67m investment in postgraduate training for future bioscientists to learn the skills required to meet economic and social challenges for the future.
The investment, from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), includes support for 14 Doctoral Training Partnerships (DTPs) across the UK as well industrial studentship awards from the Centre for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE).
Professor Jerry Roberts, Dean of the Graduate School and Director of the University’s DTP, said: “We are delighted to have been awarded a BBSRC DTP in collaboration with Rothamsted Research. The University recognises the importance of providing PhD students with both a first-class research environment and the opportunity to develop their employability skills. We believe that the training programme that we have designed will deliver bioscientists with the capacity to tackle problems of a global nature who will become the research leaders of tomorrow.”
The University, in collaboration with Rothamsted Research, has received £5.7m funding and will recruit a first cohort of over 30, four-year PhD students to start in October 2012.
The DTP will train future scientists in the areas of food security, bioenergy and industrial biotechnology, and core areas underpinning world class bioscience. These areas complement the priority research groups established by the University to harness its international reputation for the delivery of cutting-edge research and to further enhance its knowledge transfer activities in addressing challenges of global concern. The University’s record in the delivery of outstanding research and training in global food security was recently recognised by the award of a Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education.
Global food security, bioenergy and brewing sciences are all key projects within Impact: The Nottingham Campaign, which aims to raise £150m to change lives, tackle global issues and shape the future.
Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts said: “This £67m investment is excellent news for students, research organisations, industry and the UK as a whole. The brightest and best students will be finding solutions to some of the biggest challenges facing us all, from food security through to renewable energy.”
Dr Celia Caulcott, BBSRC Director of Innovation and Skills, said: “DTPs are all about training researchers to be the best they can be. By doing this we can make real inroads into answering global conundrums which will ultimately have a massive impact on the UK economy and further afield.”
The DTP funding allows institutions to recruit the best students and secure additional funding from other sources.
CASE studentships provide research training in collaboration with an industrial partner. They are four-year doctoral training grants for bioscience graduates to undertake research (leading to a PhD) on a subject selected and supervised jointly by academic and industrial partners.

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