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New Dual Degree for Biotechnology Management

A new dual degree program in business and biotechnology was recently announced. Students will earn an MBA from Wharton and a Master's of Biotechnology, which is jointly offered by SEAS and SAS.

"Now with Wharton's participation in our Biotechnology Program, we can serve business managers who seek in-depth biotechnology training. Such training is an increasing need in today's biotechnology business world in which smart business decisions are often driven by a fundamental grasp of modern molecular biology, from pharmacogenomics to drug discovery," says Dr. Scott L. Diamond, director of the Biotechnology Program.

With the collaboration of its three sponsoring schools--Wharton, the School of Engineering and the School of Arts and Sciences--the dual degree Biotechnology Management Program is uniquely positioned to supply such training. Dr. Diamond explains, "Where else can an MBA student look at DNA microarray data in the morning and learn about biotechnology licensing in the afternoon?--only at Penn and particularly at Wharton."

"With the growing interest in the business applications of biotechnology, this is a critical time to establish this multi-disciplinary dual-degree program," says Wharton School Dean Patrick Harker. "Students will get a solid grounding in the core business disciplines to prepare them for leadership in emerging bioscience industries. The program will benefit from the work of Wharton's William and Phyllis Mack Center for Technological Innovation and our extensive entrepreneurial course offerings."

Showing how viable this new dual degree is, immediately after the program was announced, several students enrolled. Even before collaborating with Wharton, the Biotechnology Program, which began in 1997, has offered specialized tracks in Molecular Biology, Bio-pharmaceutics, Bioinformatics and Biomedical Technologies. It has grown to be one of the largest biotechnology master's degree programs in the U.S. This fall, with an enrollment of more than 100 students combined in all its tracks, the Master of Biotechnology, provides a source of talent for the region.

For more information on the Master of Biotechnology Program, see


  Almanac, Vol. 49, No. 12, November 12, 2002