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The NanoBusiness Talent Program connects future scientists and high-tech companies by arranging summer internships for high school students at nanotechnology companies. Students develop their scientific acumen while working closely with scientists and entrepreneurs.
Summer jobs are a rite of passage for teens. But this summer, Christian Johnson, 18, isn't scooping ice cream or catching a tan as a lifeguard. Instead, the soon-to-be college freshman will investigate the use of nanoparticles for targeted drug delivery along with scientists at BD Technologies in North Carolina's Research Triangle Park.
Johnson, of Chapel Hill, N.C., is one of 12 students participating in an eight-week internship arranged by the NanoBusiness Talent Program. Learning from some of the nation's premier researchers, teens ages 16 to 18 will work with multimillion dollar tools used in nanoscience, including atomic force microscopy, e-beam lithography and scanning electron microscopy. They'll gain hands-on laboratory experience that most students won't get until college or graduate school.
NanoBusiness Talent arranges paid internships for high school students with nanotechnology companies in Illinois, North Carolina and Colorado. Students selected for the program demonstrate the potential to make outstanding contributions in engineering and science careers. Past interns have gone on to some of the nation's most elite universities, including Harvard, Cal Tech and Duke University.
Funded through a grant by the Department of Energy, the NanoBusiness Talent Program's mission supports President Obama's push to make U.S. students more competitive globally in science, technology, engineering and math.
"NanoBusiness Talent was developed to nurture the talent of the next generation of entrepreneurs by placing them in emerging technology companies that may not otherwise host interns," says NanoBusiness Talent Program Director Lesley Hamming, PhD. "The technology is truly groundbreaking in our partnering companies. The students get a one-of-a-kind opportunity to learn directly from the entrepreneurs and scientists leading the charge."
Nanotechnology is the science of manipulating matter at the nanoscale—1/100,000 the width of a human hair—to create new materials and products with applications for medical treatments, energy production, pollution reduction and access to clean water.
Participating companies include: Advanced Liquid Logic (Morrisville, N.C.), Protochips (Raleigh, N.C.), Appealing Products (Raleigh N.C.), BD Technologies (Research Triangle Park, N.C.), Questek (Evanston, Ill.), Nanophase Technologies (Romeoville, Ill.), Ohmx (Evanston, Ill.), NanoIntegris (Skokie, Ill.,), Nanosphere (Northbrook, Ill.), MemPro Ceramics (Broomfield, Col.) and Zettacore (Englewood, Col.).
Prior to starting their internships in June, students attended a three-day nanotechnology camp at the Center for Nanoscale Materials (CNM) at Argonne National Laboratory in Argonne, Ill. They conducted laboratory experiments and listened to lectures by several of the nation's top scientists.
"NanoBusiness Talent is a great program for people with a strong scientific background who want to further their understanding of modern science and technology," says participant Katherine Hobbs, 18, of Raleigh, N.C.
Interviews with participating students and scientists are available upon request.
About NanoBusiness Talent Program
The NanoBusiness Talent Program connects future scientists and high-tech companies by arranging summer internships for high school students at nanotechnology companies. Students develop their scientific acumen while working closely with scientists and entrepreneurs. Talent fellows are chosen from among the top junior and senior high school students for their passion for science and their potential to contribute significantly to research and innovation in emerging technology as they move forward in their careers. The NanoBusiness Talent Program was founded in 2008 by members of the NanoBusiness Alliance. For more information, please visit www.nanobusinesstalent.org.
About the NanoBusiness Alliance
The NanoBusiness Alliance is the voice of the nation's nanotechnology business community. As a not-for-profit association dedicated to promoting the commercialization of nanotechnology and helping companies bring affordable, life-improving nanotechnology products to market, the Alliance actively represents its members in Washington D.C. in order to create a positive policy climate for nanotechnology; on Wall Street to focus attention of the global financial community to this high-potential sector; and through regular NanoBusiness conferences, speaking engagements, and membership communications. The NanoBusiness Alliance helps national political leaders understand the implications of nanotechnology in the economy, employment, energy, the environment, and human health and safety. It connects emerging nanotechnology companies with investors and economic development organizations that can help those companies grow and develop. The Alliance is based in Chicago, with offices in Washington D.C., New York, Connecticut and Colorado. For more information, please visit www.nanobusiness.org.
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