CleanTECH San Diego is proud to be part of the EDGE (Educating and Developing workers for the Green Economy) Initiative. The EDGE Initiative provides education, training and placement services in the growing biofuels/industrial biotechnology industry to unemployed and incumbent workers within San Diego and the Imperial Valley. Program curriculum has been carefully constructed with input from industry partners to ensure that these sectors' needs are met with highly skilled workers. The EDGE initiative is a public-private partnership that includes CleanTECH San Diego, BIOCOM, BIOCOM Institute, San Diego Regional EDC, Imperial Valley EDC, San Diego Center for Algae Biotechnology, UCSD, UCSD Extension, San Diego State University, San Diego Workforce Partnership and MiraCosta College.
2013 EDGE Update [PDF]
EDGE Initiative Program Overview [PDF]
Our Growing Biofuels/Industrial Biotechnology Industry
A recent analysis, conducted by SANDAG, reports that for the algae sector alone, the industry provides our region with 410 direct jobs, $56 million in direct economic activity and $108 million in total economic activity annually. According to results from the California Industrial Biotech Workforce Survey, industrial biotech companies grew 19 percent between 2009 and 2010. Over the past five years, this unique segment grew 50 percent.
Funded training opportunities
Beginning in March 2011, certificate courses will be offered at UCSD Extension and MiraCosta College. The Industrial Biotech Immersion Program will launch in June 2011. The Masters program is anticipated to be launched in 2012.
- Industrial Biotech Immersion Program: This online certificate program will use industry driven curriculum to give individuals the business acumen and soft skills needed to successfully transition into industrial biotech careers.
- Biomass Production Training Certificate: This certificate, initially run through MiraCosta Collage, will provide a foundation in the technologies employed by biotechnology companies engaged in the production of microalgal biomass for biofuels and other applications for biomass production careers.
- Biofuels Science Technician Certificate: Tracks - Biological/Biofuels Lab Technician, Microbiological/Crop Management, Biofuels Analytical Chemist: This certificate, initially run through UCSD Extension, will provide the hands-on technical knowledge and experience in biofuels production, analysis and processing required to excel in a management-level biofuels career, in one of three areas: analytical chemistry, microbiological/crop management, or biological/biofuels lab techniques.
- Advanced Training in Biofuels Production Certificate (Masters of Advanced Studies): Fulfilling the need to continue to understand and improve the science of biofuels, the UCSD-based M.A.S. will prepare advanced degree holders to assume responsibility for important research in the growing biofuels industry by providing technical knowledge and hands-on experience in biofuels production, analysis and processing, as well as basic biotechnology business and entrepreneurial skills.
- Paid Internships: The EDGE internship program provides opportunities to obtain hands-on experience in the rapidly emerging biofuels/industrial biotech industry. Each work experience is tailored to a participant's education level and capabilities. Interns gain exposure to career options, laboratory experience, work-readiness skills and mentoring from industry professionals.