College News

Bioprocessing program to grow with grant approvals


RALEIGH–The bioprocess technology program at Centralrn Carolina Community College (CCCC) will be able to reachrn more people in the future because of a pair of grants totalingrn $77,586.

rn Golden LEAF, a non-profit corporation, approved two grantsrn for CCCC; one for facility enhancement, and the other forrn innovation. The CCCC proposal was presented as a part ofrn many grants the North Carolina Community College Systemrn (NCCCS) BioNetwork program had up for approval.

rn A $33,750 equipment grant will allow CCCC, a BioNetworkrn college, to support a partnership for high school bioprocessrn education.

rn "rn We're very excited to be in partnership with Harnett Countyrn Public Schools and the Harnett County Economic Developmentrn Commission on this project that will provide bioprocessrn education for high school juniors and seniors,” CCCCrn engineering technologies chair Steve Lympany said. “Notrn only will these students have an opportunity to explorern careers in the growing bioprocessing industry, but, withrn the equipment this grant will provide, they will be ablern to learn about bioprocessing in a hands-on laboratory setting."

rn The $43,836 biotechnology innovation grant will enablern CCCC to offer quality assurance courses via distance educationrn for bioprocess/biotech curriculum.

rn “rn This will greatly benefit individuals currently employedrn in the industry since they can take the course followingrn their own schedule due to the distance format,” saidrn Preston Sellers, CCCC dean of engineering, industrial andrn health programs.

rn This is the third round of grant money the bioprocessingrn technology program at CCCC has received from Golden LEAFrn in the past year. The program received an $84,000 grantrn in June for purchasing downstream processing equipment.rn In December, it received a $124,000 grant for upstreamrn processing equipment. Totaling the grants from all threern rounds, CCCC has received $201,586 in funding from Goldenrn LEAF.

rn CCCC is improving its program to meet industry needs. Accordingrn to an NC Biotechnology Center study, the biotech industryrn is growing by an estimated 3,000 jobs annually, of whichrn 2,000 require education and training at the community collegern level. The biopharmaceutical industry does not hire peoplern without the specialized training needed to work in an FDA-regulatedrn biomanufacturing or pharmaceutical facility. Communityrn Colleges like CCCC need to provide hands-on training forrn the biomanufacturing and pharmaceutical industries.

rn "rn We are extremely proud to be able to play such a pivotalrn role in providing training for the biotech industry," NCCCSrn President H. Martin Lancaster said in a released statement. "Thesern grants give us the opportunity to extend opportunitiesrn to almost every corner of North Carolina, particularlyrn in areas where retraining for 21st Century industries isrn especially needed."

rn Golden LEAF provided $8.7 million in startup funding forrn the NCCCS and its BioNetwork program as part of an overallrn grant to the Biomanufacturing & Pharmaceutical Trainingrn Consortium.

rn For more information on the bioprocess technology programrn at CCCC visit the website at

rn For more information about NCCCS BioNetwork, visit