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The first class of engineers graduates in the Biotech City

The first class of engineers graduates in the Biotech City

The first 18 students from the Bachelor of Engineering in Biotechnology at University College Absalon graduated on January 29th. The idea came about in the autumn of 2015 and with a unique cooperation across municipality, region, industry and education; it has been possible to create an educational success in Kalundborg.

Friday 29th of January, 18 new biotech engineers received their proof of having completed their education. It is the preliminary culmination of a mission - a mission to attract more students and a more qualified labour force to Kalundborg, the Biotech City of Denmark:

“It is a joyful day – first and foremost for the 18 new biotech engineers, but also for Kalundborg, the many companies, Kalundborg Municipality, Region Zealand and for Absalon. It has required a great deal of cooperation across to get this good idea to become reality. The mission is accomplished, we have now created an education in Kalundborg, which can both attract students from Denmark and abroad and secure a qualified labour force in the Biotech City”, says Camilla Wang, Rector at University College Absalon.  

The majority has already been employed 

11 out of the 18 new engineers have already been offered a job in the Biotech companies. Four have chosen to continue their studies, and the expectation is that the remaining will get a job in the near future:

“One thing is to get an idea and start up a new education. Even though it then succeeds the way it has in Kalundborg, where everyone have pulled together, the real success depends on the possibility for the students to get a job afterwards. There is no doubt that this possibility exists. There is a great demand for this in Kalundborg. This shows the importance of moving the education closer to the demand. The companies get to see the students, and the students can assess the companies and not least the entire area, which makes it easier to create a match”, says Daniel Bojsen, Director of Health, Social Work and Engineering at Absalon.  

Attention, attention and attention

It is not enough to get a good idea and to get everyone to support it. Future students also need to become aware of the new educations in Kalundborg and not least to apply for admission:

“These 18 are just the first of many. There has been a steady increase in the number of applications since the education started. However, it has taken a lot of work and resources to point out that it is now possible to become a Bachelor of Engineering in Kalundborg, that there are many exciting internship possibilities, and not least plenty of opportunities for a job after graduating”, says Head of Study, Kathrine Bisgaard Christensen.  

A success, which can be copied 

Novo Nordisk, the absolute largest industrial company in Kalundborg has, as well as the rest of the industry, contributed with guest lectures, a mentor system, study jobs, internships and projects and now several students have also been employed at Novo Nordisk.    

”Novo Nordisk manufactures half of the world’s insulin in Kalundborg, where we employ 3,000 people.  Through more than 50 years, we have built up highly specialized competencies and production facilities in Kalundborg, and it is crucial for us that we have access to qualified labour. We are very pleased that we are part of building up a strong, local food chain of biotech engineers - and in the future mechanical engineers. We have cooperated with several of the students who are graduating now during their entire education. The engineers from Absalon have an extra dimension because they have been close to practice in the local industry during their entire education as a supplement to their theoretical education. Therefore, we are also happy that five of them have already accepted jobs a Novo Nordisk in Kalundborg”, says Michael Hallgren, Sr. Vice President at Novo Nordisk Kalundborg.    

For Rector Camilla Wang the success in Kalundborg is a model, which can also be used in other parts of Denmark:

“We have shown that it is possible, but it really takes that everyone participate all the way. We must also keep up the work; we cannot rest on our laurels now. We must continue to develop the educations in Kalundborg and create the best conditions for the students. One of the great steps forward will take place after the summer holiday where a brand new campus will be ready”, says Camilla Wang.

More information

Camilla Wang - Rector at University College Absalon - +45 7248 1044

Daniel Bojsen - Director of Health, Social Work and Engineering, Absalon - +45 7248 1547

Kathrine Bisgaard Christensen - Head of Studies, Bachelor of Engineering in Biotechnology - +45 7248 1497

Klaus Kristensen – Press Officer Absalon - +45 7248 2727

Read more about:
Bachelor of Engineering in Biotechnology
Mechanical Engineering (in Danish)