100 Joins UNCP Biotech Project
Sylvia Pate, Chancellor Meadors, Morris Bullock and Len Holmes
fermentation project at The University of North Carolina at Pembroke
received a key vote of support from the Robeson County Committee of
"This is a
different kind of "spec" building for us," said Committee
of 100 Chair Morris Bullock who delivered a check for $15,000 to the
university on Wednesday. "This project holds promise to do good
things for the region's economy and to train our young people."
The project will
construct a facility to manufacture valuable molecular products from
living cells. It will also produce valuable research, training and attract
the growing biotechnology industry to the region.
The Committee of
100 is dedicated to stimulating the local economy primarily by constructing
shell buildings to attract industry. The $15,000 will go for a marketing
and development study for the project, which will be located at the
Carolina Commerce and Technology
Center (COMtech.), a developing site for technology-focused business,
industry, education, training and business incubation facilities.
"There is momentum
building at COMtech. and at the university," Mr. Bullock said.
"We are very, very impressed with the expertise the university
possesses in science and its ability to market it."
"This is a
rare opportunity to put a feather in our cap for the development of
this county," he said.
C. Meadors thanked the university's new partners. "We want to be
an engine of growth in this region, and our biotechnology project speaks
to that goal," Chancellor Meadors said. "However good we are,
we will always need partners to be successful. We're very pleased to
receive this kind of endorsement and assistance from the Committee of
The project would
construct a $1 million facility on 12 acres that the university owns
at COMtech, said Dr. Len Holmes, chemistry professor and project director.
investment can be parlayed into a tremendous return," Dr. Holmes
said. "The biotechnology industry hold great promise for the future,
and North Carolina is already a world leader in research, development
and manufacturing thanks to forward-thinking leadership."
"We can be
leaders in attracting biotechnology manufacturers, but only if we act
now and act together," he said.
Office of Sponsored Research and Programs and the
Regional Center for Economic, Community and Professional
Development are working on about $4 million in grants from public
and private sources for this project, said Regional Center Director
industry is going to happen in Southeastern North Carolina," Ms.
Pate said. "The question is who will get there first. And, why
not Robeson County?"
to University Newswire