This month marks the first-year anniversary of the Amgen Biotech Experience (ABE) program in Singapore. In November 2017, the Amgen Foundation launched the ABE program in partnership with Science Centre Singapore.
One year on, the ABE program has reached 870 students across 14 secondary schools in Singapore. Four out of five students expressed that they had learnt something new, while 85% had enjoyed the hands-on activities that they engaged in.
Globally, the ABE program is available across 13 regions including Singapore. Science Centre Singapore has worked closely with the Amgen Foundation to adapt the six-week in-class lab initiative to what is known as ABE Express.
ABE Express is a condensed version of the ABE curriculum and has been adapted to local schools’ curriculum and syllabus. Science Educators in Science Centre Singapore (SCS) conduct the program over one to two days, instead of a six-week in-class lab initiative.
The program has proven popular among new secondary schools coming onboard. Through ABE Express, teachers and students are empowered to discover topics like human therapeutics and to explore developments in areas such as biological medicines.
These learning journeys often tie back to areas relevant to Singapore, such as innovative treatments for diabetes, a national health priority.
Mrs Lam Mei Kien, a science teacher at Methodist Girls’ School involved in the pilot program in 2017 said, “The ABE program is very comprehensive and very well designed. The experiments are reproducible with good results.”
In addition, a student at Whitley Secondary School shared, “ABE gave me a better and deeper understanding of concepts in genetic engineering. This topic is not easy to understand if I just learnt it from the textbook, so these classes are an effective way to enhance our learning of the topic.”
Science Centre Singapore (STEM Inc. department) has partnered Amgen Singapore as part of its Applied Learning Program (ALP).
This partnership enables a selection of school teachers to visit Amgen Singapore’s Next Generation Biomanufacturing facility to gain tangible exposure to the manufacturing process.
Through this, they learn more about the local STEM landscape and methods to empower and inspire their students to further explore the biotech field.
The partnership has been well received by local educators since its inception. The ABE program in Singapore is expected to reach more than 2,000 students across the nation as the Amgen Foundation is committed to invest S$280,000 in furthering STEM education through to 2020.
If new schools are interested to join the ABE program, they can click on ABE’s Introduction Guide to find out how to implement that in their school or consult the Amgen Biotech Experience webpage for more information.