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BioTech SYSTEM is a Northern California consortium supporting STEM education in grades K-14 and fostering a collaborative network that includes diverse stakeholders in the biotech community. 

Founding members of BioTech SYSTEM include representatives from public colleges and universities, community organizations, local governments, school districts and the biotech industry.

Director's Corner

Teen Biotech Challenge

TBC2018 Contest Instructions and the SPARK Research Scholar Application (only open to TBC participants) are now available. In 2017, 254 California high school students from 13 schools registered to build 146 contest websites. After the preliminary round of judging, 56 finalist websites by 86 students were submitted for final judging.

Contest Dates for 2018

    February 1st - Sponsor Teachers Submit Registration List of All TBC Participants
    February 22nd - SPARK Research Scholar Applications Due
    March 22nd - Website Entries Submitted for Final Judging
    April 12th - SPARK Research Scholar Awards Announced
    May 7th - TBC Winners Announced Online
    May 18th - 2018 Teen Biotech Challenge Awards Symposium


Check out recent Teen Biotech Challenge winners for inspiration!

Celebrating their achievements amid an unexpected thunderstorm (which was a nice change of pace!) on May 20, 2016, we extend sincere congratulations to the TBC2016 focus area winners:


The TBC2015 focus area winners were:


The TBC2014 focus area winners were:


Biotechnology in Food & Agriculture

For science-based answers to general questions about GMOs in food and agriculture, as well as the latest approaches to global agricultural sustainability, these sites provide well-curated information for teachers, students and curious consumers:


Particularly useful for educating general audiences, has created a series of fact-based videos addressing frequently asked consumer questions regarding food safety, agricultural production systems, GM crops, labelling GMOs and related topics.


Public Biotech Seminars at UC Davis & Sacramento State University

The Current Progess in Biotechnology seminar (MCB294) is open to the UC Davis campus community and to the public. Seminars are held each Friday throughout the academic year from 11am-noon in Rm 1022 Life Sciences at UC Davis.  Though talks are geared for an interdisciplinary audience of graduate students (biologists, chemists, engineers, biostatisticians, etc…), local K-14 educators are welcome and encouraged to attend.

The Sacramento State Center for STEM Excellence offers a public lecture series during the academic year. The STEM Scholars Lecture series is also available for viewing online!


Global Science & Engineering News via Twitter

Following science journals and news media outlets on Twitter is a fantastic way to keep up with the latest biotech research efforts and discoveries. Check out the recent articles that have caught my eye .

Favorite Tweeps Include:


There are many, many more interesting scientists and science writers to follow on Twitter. Take a look!

Science & Engineering Contests for High School Students


Fun Stuff

I love the "Genetics 101" YouTube videos produced by 23andMe - quick and informative mini-lessons on human genetics. Great for priming class discussion!

"The PCR Song"--If you haven't heard it, you are missing out! Check out the rockin' music video put together by our colleagues at Bio-Rad.

DNA Fingerprinting Laboratory--Solve a forensic mystery! The Partnership for Biotechnology & Genomics Education has developed free software for teachers and students.

Create Your Own Biotech Word Art on Wordle...

Molec-Life-Tech 3

Wordle: Molec-Life-Tech 3


Molec-Life-Tech 2

Wordle: Molec-Life-Tech 2


Global Food Security

Wordle: Global Food Security


People Need Food

Wordle: People Need Food


Race 4 $1K Genome

Wordle: Race 4 $1K Genome


DSJ 2012

Dr. Denneal Jamison-McClung Director of the BioTech SYSTEM