BTI researchers collaborate with scholars and scientists from around the world. Formal exchange programs between institutions enhance communications between researchers.
Nara Institute of Science and Technology
Students from BTI spend several weeks in a laboratory at the Nara Institute of Science and Technology (NAIST) in western Japan conducting research and immersing themselves in a different culture. Students from the host laboratory become cultural mentors for the U.S. visitors and in exchange the biotech trainees host a reciprocal visit for NAIST students–forging lasting professional and personal bonds.
BTI and NAIST have also held collaborative symposia since the year 2000. Coordinated with the formal exchange program, these symposia have enhanced communications between researchers at the two institutions. These international connections provide an opportunity for technological as well as cultural learning experiences.
In 2001, BTI welcomed the first students from Hochschule Wadenswill, Switzerland, which specializes in applied biotechnology. Students from Wadenswill typically spent 4-6 months working with BTI graduate students in a BTI faculty laboratory. Upon return to Wadenswill the student wrote a diploma thesis based on their learning experience at BTI. The BTI laboratory benefited from the focused efforts of students who came well trained in the techniques of applied biotechnology.
A Rewarding Experience in Japan
Janice Frias, Katherine Volzing, Chad Satori and Josh Ochocki visited Japan this past November as part of the BioTechnology Institute’s ongoing exchange program with the Nara Institute of Science and Technology (NAIST). They travelled to Japan with returning exchange students from NAIST whom they had previously hosted at BTI.
BTI-NAIST Exchange Marks 15 Years
Following a visit to Minnesota by three Japanese graduate students from the Nara Institute of Science and Technology (NAIST), a group of four Minnesota graduate students from the BioTechnology Institute (BTI) visited Japan in mid-October. Chris Flynn, Grayson Wawrzyn, Jessica Eichmiller and Maria Rebolleda-Gomez were graciously hosted by their NAIST counterparts on a 3-week trip that completed the 15th exchange in a program organized by former BTI Director, Ken Valentas in 1996.