Dr. Ajay Shah, an Assistant Professor in Food, Agricultural, and Biological Engineering, and Shivani Patel, studying Biological Engineering, represented The Ohio State University at the Advanced Bioeconomy Leadership Conference (ABLC Global), a conference dedicated to the most important issues in the bioeconomy.
They were among over 50 Student Delegates, Faculty Mentors, and Leadership Team members of the Consortium for Advanced Bioeconomy Leadership Education (CABLE) who attended the conference in San Francisco, California.
CABLE is a nationwide organization of 20 universities focused on training students to pursue leadership positions in bioeconomy-related careers. The Ohio State University is leading the program and overseeing a $2.8 million grant from the United States Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture (USDA-NIFA).
Patel is among 20 Student Delegates, aided by their Faculty Mentors, that are participating in a year-long program focused on leadership development within the bioeconomy. The program provides access to current industry leaders and CEOs, feedback on career preparation and academic training, and internship opportunities.
Attending ABLC Global provides an opportunity for students to learn from and network with industry professionals as well as participate in leadership training sessions. Students took part in information sessions and industry panels that featured representatives from Aemetis, LanzaTech, Sierra Energy, POET, Impossible Foods, and many others.
CABLE was created to develop bioeconomy industry leaders who will be ready to fill bioeconomy careers. Those future careers include chemists, engineers, scientists. Program Director Dennis Hall notes “The advanced bioeconomy is critical to a more sustainable future for society, but it’s largely invisible to all but few college students. The ultimate goal is to equip more students with the knowledge and leadership skills necessary for successful biobased enterprises.”
As Patel and her fellow Student Delegates progress throughout the year, they will continue to have close interaction with and receive support from bioeconomy professionals. CABLE is intent on fostering leadership development within students and aiding them in achieving their career goals.