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New Biotech Instructor Katherine “Kay” Wellman Brings Fresh Ideas to the University’s Center for Biotechnology Education

by Aliyah DeVille

Kay Wellman

That “new” face you’ve seen around campus might not be so new. Katherine “Kay” Wellman is one of the most recent additions to the Center for Biotechnology Education in the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, but she’s no stranger to the Hopkins family. She earned a joint Master of Science in Biotechnology/MBA degree from the university in 2008. Now she’s back, and she’s ready to play a major role in the Center, and, more specifically, in its Montgomery County Campus site.

And believe it when you hear that this woman knows her stuff…

Wellman has worked in the biotechnology industry for the past 12 years at companies around the county and she plans to bring her extensive knowledge of county, state and federal biotech-related laws and regulations to the program.

“Many biotechnology companies – especially the smaller companies – just don’t know about a lot of these laws,” said Wellman, who is making it her mission here at Hopkins to educate as many biotechnology professionals as she can.

And her extensive academic knowledge and industry experience in regulatory affairs qualifies her to do so. She has a Master’s Degree in Health and Safety from Indiana State University and is pursuing a doctoral degree in Public Administration from the University of Baltimore. And her industry experience includes a number of years working with mergers and acquisitions for biotech companies, which she called her “most fun job ever.” She also said it was her most rewarding because the work she did affected public health and safety.

Now, this self-described “naturally curious” professor will be using her knowledge and experience to satisfy the curiosity of other biotechnology professionals enrolled in the Center's part-time graduate programs. For example, Wellman has been working with Center and Carey Business School staff on the MS/MBA program, which will now be much more flexible and will be catered to the students’ different concentrations of study. She's also excited  to help grow the newly launched Master of Biotechnology Enterprise and Entrepreneurship.

And she’s more than happy to be back at Hopkins.

“What I like about Hopkins is that it is very community oriented,” she said. “You’re always working with the public. It’s very global and it keeps me fresh. At Hopkins, you really get to look around the world.”

Wellman has big plans for new programs at CBE, including a new elective course on emerging technologies and an online seminar in which students get to study the inner workings of a company. It’s easy to tell that this biotech professor is passionate about her students, her field, and the future of biotechnology education at Johns Hopkins University.

CATEGORY: Academics