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MdBio Foundation to Host 10th ATLAS College & Career Readiness Symposium

MdBio Foundation, a national non-profit that provides STEM education and workforce development to underserved communities, will hosts its 10th Advancing Tomorrow’s Leaders in STEM (ATLAS)college and career readiness symposium on November 9, 2018, at Montgomery College’s campus in Germantown, Md. ATLAS brings students typically underrepresented in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) together with Maryland’s leading employers to learn about career opportunities and foster the development of a strong pipeline of skilled STEM workers that will fuel the state’s growing science and technology sectors.

“ATLAS was created to help solve two important challenges for our region—offering students who do not have access to networking and career opportunities the chance to learn about STEM careers, and giving businesses a way to share their valuable professional experience with our future workforce,” said Brian Gaines, CEO of MdBio Foundation. “The energy and enthusiasm we see at ATLAS comes from both sides—students eager to meet STEM role models as they prepare to build a career and a better future for themselves, and professionals sharing their passion for STEM careers while inspiring students to consider similar career paths. With this event, we are completing the circle that will power Maryland’s innovation economy well into the future.”

ATLAS’ keynote speaker is Dr. JoAnn Suzich, vice president of research at Gaithersburg, Md.-based MedImmune, the global biologics research and development unit of AstraZeneca. Dr. Suzich will speak with students about her career path in STEM and lessons she learned along the way. In her research role, she is responsible for studies at the intersection of infection and immunity, including pediatric lung infections associated with childhood asthma, the impact of the microbiome on disease and health, and the link between chronic infection and cancer.

“If we are to continue to solve the toughest health challenges of tomorrow, we need to cultivate the talent today,” said Dr. Suzich. “I can say with authority that employers will be waiting, but more importantly, patients are waiting. At MedImmune we are driven to create life-saving medicines — a process that does not happen without people who fundamentally love science and live to innovate; programs like ATLAS are critical to nurturing that passion early on so that it can thrive.”

The ATLAS event will take place at:

Montgomery College, Bioscience Education Center (B.E.C.)
20200 Observation Drive
Germantown, MD 20876 + Google Map

The schedule for the November 9 ATLAS includes:

Registration (8:15 – 9:15AM)

Welcome (9:15 – 9:45 AM)

  • Brian Gaines, CEO, MdBio Foundation
  • Margaret Latimer, Vice President & Provost, Montgomery College Germantown Campus
  • JoAnn Suzich, Ph.D., Vice President of Research, MedImmune

Campus Tour (10:15 – 11:15 AM)

Tour of Montgomery College's new Bioscience Education Center and its state-of-the-art laboratories and learning spaces. The tour will highlight cutting-edge technologies in biotechnology, biomanufacturing and bioinformatics.

Workshops (10:15 – 1:15)

  • Oh no, Is that a Leak!? Operating a Water Network, presented by PURE Technology and WSSC
  • Crime Scene Investigation at our Borders, presented by MdBio Foundation
  • The Structure & Importance of DNA, presented by Emergent BioSolutions
  • Student Programs & STEM Engagement, presented by NASA

ATLAS Expo Hall

Students will have the chance to network with companies about internships and job opportunities, as well as talk with STEM professionals who might be able to connect them with jobs after graduation.


LaTara Harris, Regional Director – External and Legislative Affairs, DC, Maryland and Virginia, AT&T


ATLAS is made possible by the generous sponsorships from AstraZeneca/MedImmune, AT&T, Montgomery College, NASA, Pure Technologies, and Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission.

Participation in ATLAS is free for both students and companies. Expo registration can be found here.

About MdBio Foundation

MdBio Foundation is a non-profit organization that provides innovative, effective and experiential science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education and workforce development opportunities to underserved communities. MdBio’s interdisciplinary approach uses STEM to explore a real-world, problem-centric curriculum that bridges school, community, health and business. The foundation’s flagship program is a mobile laboratory for high schools that has provided quality educational experiences to more than 170,000 students since its launch in 2003. MdBio also operates other celebrated STEM education programs, such as the Young Science Explorers Program for middle school students, the Maryland BioGENEius Award, and ATLAS: Advancing Tomorrow’s Leaders in STEM college and career symposium. Visit or follow on social media @MdBioFoundation.

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Last Updated: 07-Nov-2018