Program Activities & Requirements

1.) Industrial internship: One of the unique features of the CBTP is the requirement that all students in the program have an industrial internship experience (ideally 3 months in length, but perhaps longer). Accordingly, all trainees supported by CBTP must participate in a 2-6-month industry internship. Each trainee will receive help from their dissertation mentor, the CBTP program director, and our larger program network (trainees, alumni, industrial affiliates, etc.) to arrange an internship during the first year in the program. We expect the company to financially support the student during the internship period at an amount at least equivalent to a typical graduate student stipend (Grad Care benefits continue during the internship).  Financial support from the CBTP for a second year in the program is contingent on completion of the industry internship.

2.) Annual Symposium: The CBTP holds an annual symposium, typically in the spring (April or May), for which an external speaker (typically with significant biotechnology industry experience) serves as the keynote.  Trainees are required to present posters describing their dissertation progress, with awards made to the top posters (as judged by CBTP faculty).  Faculty and industrial affiliates are also encouraged to attend and participate.  

3.) Course requirements: CBTP trainees must take the program’s flagship course, PharmSci 706 (Biopharmaceutical Product Development).  Courses in Research Responsibility and Ethics (PIBS 503) and Rigor and Reproducibility (504) are also required.

4.) Monthly student meetings: CBTP trainees are required to attend monthly dinner meetings. At these meetings, students have an opportunity to present their own research and learn about the research of their peers outside their area of immediate interest.  Second year trainees who have completed internships also present on their internship experiences at these meetings.

5.) Monthly mentoring lunches: CBTP trainees also participate in sponsored lunches which provide mentoring by program faculty and by biotechnology industry scientists. The trainees contact potential lunch guests and arrange the details on their own to begin forming a network of contacts.

 6.) Additional Program activities: Trainees will have opportunities to participate in activities in the Center for Entreprenership, Fast Forward Medical Innovation offerings, and an Office of Technology Transfer Shadowing Program, depending on their interests.

7.) Individual Development Plans (IDPs): CBTP trainees are expected to formulate IDPs during the first year of funding, review them with their advisors and update them annually in consultation with the Program Director. 

Upon completion of these program requirements, the Rackham Graduate School awards a Certificate in Biotechnology to trainees upon completion of their Ph.D., providing they fulfill the other requirements of their department and Rackham. To meet the CBTP requirements for the certificate, students must complete a total of 15 credit hours (which MUST include the 3 credit CBTP 504 core course noted above).  Not more than 6 credit hours of non-doctoral research will be accepted towards the 15 credit hour requirement.  For students who also earn a master’s degree as part of their graduate studies (this applies mostly to engineering students), a maximum of 5 credit hours can be double-counted towards the M.S.E. degree and the Biotechnology Certificate.  Trainees nearing completion of their degrees should complete this form, and direct any questions they may have to the CBTP Program Director or Administrator.