Science in Schools
Schools' Science Day
Sixth Form Conferences
Researcher in Residence
Bioscience Boot Camp
Royal Society Exhibition
Public Engagement Training
Bioscience Bootcamp was pioneered in July 2007 to provide 6th formers with insights into biomedical research. A one-week programme of science seminars, lab work, a science-ethics workshop and careers guidance was devised, concluding with a Bioenterprise Masterclass illustrating the processes through which science becomes a commercial reality.
The programme also included activities designed to stimulate debate about the social/ethical dimensions of science and to encourage students to be reflective as they consider topical scientific issues. A careers workshop provided access to inspirational role models (PhD students, post-docs and senior scientists) from the Institute and companies on site to provide personal insights in careers in science as well as science-related careers such as science communication, patenting and entrepreneurship.
Towards the end of the week we organised a visit to the Chemistry Department at the University of Cambridge to hear about research at the interface of chemistry and biology.
The University admissions office provided information about the Natural Sciences Tripos / admissions process and the afternoon concluded with a visit to Peterhouse hosted by the admissions tutor for Natural Sciences.
A Bioenterprise Masterclass drew the week’s activities to a close; Dr Frank Ellis from GSK joined Dr Claire Cockcroft to illustrate the processes through which science becomes a commercial reality, stimulating awareness of entrepreneurship and innovation in the bioscience sphere.
In 2010, Bootcamp took on an international dimension with 12 students from Japanese schools joining 18 students from 6th forms around the UK.
In 2011 20 students were selected from Hills Road Sixth Form College, Long Road Sixth Form College, Netherhall Sixth Form, CATS, The Simon Balle School, Hertford and The Robert Smyth School, Leicester with students from Saffron Walden County High School and Impington College joining parts of the programme.
2011 also saw the event developing further by partnerships with a biotech company (Immunobiology Ltd) at our campus and Napp Pharmaceuticals Ltd, to illustrate how scientific discoveries are translated into commercial reality and new therapies are brought from bench to bedside.
While visiting Napp Pharmaceuticals the students heard about innovations in the treatment of pain, took part in a workshop analysing information from a fictional clinical trial and toured the facilities, getting a behind the scenes insight into how pharmaceuticals are produced.
Dr Jo Montgomery, Napp’s Science Ambassador Scheme Coordinator said, “Students attended a one-day workshop at Napp on clinical trials and the Industry perspective of careers and drug development. This is part of our ongoing commitment to encouraging and inspiring the next generation of scientists through Napp’s Science Ambassador Scheme."
“It was brilliant to have so much hands-on laboratory work and to be able to see the techniques used by researchers, as well as complex machinery/software which I would never be able to experience at school. All the scientists were excellent mentors.”
“It was fantastic as it had a mixture of straight biochemistry and also looking at behaviour in mice, which I loved. It has really cemented my desire to study biochemistry and given me a much better idea of what research is like.”
“I’ve extremely enjoyed this placement. I really feel I’ve learned some useful laboratory skills. Nicky March, my supervisor has a really interesting job, which I could see myself doing.”
“Boot Camp confirmed my decision to do a scientific degree and gave me the opportunity to see what real scientists do”
Bootcamp really helped cement my desire to go into practical science and I am currently in my final year of my Biomedical Science degree at the University of Sheffield, which I love. This past summer I undertook a Wellcome Trust funded research project studying prostate cancer here at the Sheffield Medical School which was really exciting. Having already seen the research environment at Babraham, it was a lot less daunting when I started! My ultimate plan is to do a PhD in the area of cancer cell biology. Thank you very much for the experience you provided with the Bootcamp, as I do feel it was incredibly helpful in pushing me towards where I am today. Joanna Durkin, Bootcamp 2007
Currently I am in my second year doing a Bsc Biology with Management (4YC) at Imperial College. I am actually doing the course along with someone else from the Bootcamp programme who I kept in touch with. My plans are progressing quite well except from the slight delay due to a gap year. Hopefully I will be able to get on to a PhD programme straight after my degree but if that is not possible then try to apply to a Masters programme at Oxford. I have looked at the Babraham website from time to time, but for this year my placement has been arranged; I will be researching on the mechanism of pain under a supervisor at Imperial during the summer. Thanks for the email, and all the help with the Bootcamp experience, I am sure I would not have got into university without it. I shall be looking into Babraham and Sanger for PhD opportunities along with other institutes. Sadfer Ali, Bootcamp 2007
Babraham Bootcamp inspires new generation
Business Weekly 28th July 2011
Science tasks test students
Cambridge News August 5th 2010
Science hosts rising sons and daughters
Business Weekly August 12th 2010
Dr Claire Cockcroft
Head, External Relations
Contact by email
Babraham Institute - Babraham Research Campus - Cambridge - United Kingdom