The overarching goal of this proposal is to build a network to support workforce development for college graduates’ progression towards careers focused on biology and related fields in academia, high school education, government, and the private sector. The network will function to:
a) Determine the essential technical and professional skills needed or sought in today’s workplace, and evaluate whether traditional undergraduate biology curricula equip graduates with these skills.
b) Establish both a virtual and physical career conference to inform high school and undergraduate students about the skills needed for STEM careers in all sectors of the workforce and train them in ways they can best attain these skills.
c) Design a framework for providing authentic research experiences for undergraduate biology students, which occurs early in their careers, incorporates emerging technologies, and provides multiple opportunities for engagement in research and authentic enterprise.