Innovative MiAlgae champions growth of next generation biotech talent

15/09/2023
Left to Right: Iseabail Farquhar, Charlotte Lee and Ben Baker

SCOTTISH biotechnology innovator, MiAlgae, a producer of sustainable Omega-3 rich ingredients from algae, has announced new additions to its growing team. Supporting skills development and training opportunities, the company recently welcomed two eager Foundation Apprentices on board, in addition to three PhD students who are currently completing placements. 

The two Foundation Apprentices joined MiAlgae at the beginning of September to gain valuable practical work experience in the company’s research lab and to learn more about Scotland’s thriving biotechnology sector. 

Jason Talac and James Blakely, who both attend Musselburgh Grammar, are embarking on an eight-month placement within MiAlgae’s R&D team. 

Three talented PhD students also joined the MiAlgae team in July 2023 and have already contributed significantly to the company’s innovative R&D programme, which covers process optimisation, technology transfer and future applications of MiAlgae’s proprietary platform.

Researcher PhD Student, Charlotte Lee, joined the company as a Research Intern from the University of Stirling, where she is a tutor for Biological and Environmental Sciences. Charlotte contacted MiAlgae directly, interested in sustainable solutions and inspired by the company’s work. 

Ben Baker and Iseabail Farquhar also joined MiAlgae as Research Interns from the University of Edinburgh School of Biological Sciences, with MiAlgae sponsoring Iseabail’s industry-led PhD.

Using liquid by-products from the whisky industry, MiAlgae drives sustainable change by growing Omega-3 rich algae which can be used as a nutritious ingredient for fish feed and pet food. 

Jo Partridge, Operations Director at MiAlgae, said: “Scotland is bursting with young talent and at MiAlgae, we recognise the importance of enabling our next generation of biotechnology leaders to gain the real-life experience needed to thrive in their careers. There are many routes into biotech and we’re championing apprenticeships alongside more traditional academic routes. 

“Biotechnology will solve many of the challenges we face today, and so it’s been encouraging to see the high volume of enthusiastic applicants we have had for our placements – from students across Scotland and much further afield. MiAlgae’s sustainable approach supports a more circular economy, and we hope to reinforce our message with talented people who will continue to drive this change for years to come. We’re thrilled to welcome our new Foundation Apprentices to join our existing PhD Research Interns as part of the R&D team.” 

Charlotte Lee, MiAlgae Research Intern and PhD student at the University of Stirling, said: “I’m incredibly passionate about marine ecosystems and reducing the pollution that can harm them. It’s really exciting to be working with a company that is driving such positive change across the aquaculture industry, protecting wild fish and reducing waste in the process. During my internship, I’ve gained great insight and experience and I also hope to play a role in MiAlgae’s vision in the future.”

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