Bench to Shop: An Interdisciplinary Training Program for Transitioning of Transboundary Animal Disease Research to Commercialization.
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Transboundary animal diseases (TADs) are livestock diseases characterized as highly contagious, fast-spreading, and capable of producing high morbidity and mortality. Accidental or intentional introduction of these diseases into the United States could devastate the economy, food security, and public health. Training of researchers, scientists and animal health workers is often limited to prevention and diagnosis with little emphasis on the importance of translating knowledge to the development of new products for the prevention, detection and control of outbreaks. The Bench to Shop training program was developed to fill this gap and applied an innovative blended-learning method through the use of an online platform, a 3-week experiential training, and a 1-month follow-up project. The program specifically targeted next-generation researchers, including PhD students, post-doctoral researchers, and early-career faculty. A total of 17 trainees, in two cohorts, were selected through a national and international recruitment process. Program evaluation consisted of focus groups, follow-up interviews, and pre- and post-tests of didactic material, revealing statistically significant gains in knowledge. Participants expanded their professional networks with leaders in industry and regulatory agencies related to production and/or commercialization of TAD products and deepened their commitment toward keeping our country safe from TADs. Post-program impacts on trainees included advancing products toward commercialization, partnering with connections made through the program, and demonstrating dedication to homeland security by pursuing product development related educational and career opportunities. Overall, results suggest this program provides an added value and should be readily available to the current and future workforce.
author list (cited authors)
Arenas-Gamboa, A. M., Simmons, H. L., Werre, S. R., & Krecek, R. C.
complete list of authors
Arenas-Gamboa, Angela M||Simmons, Heather L||Werre, Stephen R||Krecek, Rosina C