Submitted by Tyler Bosser.
TACOMA, WASH. August 8, 2018 – Tacoma is behind its neighboring cities of Seattle and Bellevue when it comes to the biotechnology industry. With the rapid growth of biotech in recent years, companies are crowding the King County area. Why not expand and grow biotech into Tacoma? With plentiful space, cheaper rent, and a lower cost of living, Tacoma is a prime location for the growth of this industry.
The Readiness Acceleration and Innovation Network (RAIN) is a nonprofit life science incubator in Tacoma that seeks to educate its community to grow jobs, talent, and companies in biotech that would pour into Tacoma’s economy. RAIN recently signed a contract with SignalChem, a biotech company from Vancouver, BC, to distribute kinases and enzymes used throughout the US. Looking forward, RAIN sees Tacoma and surrounding regions as a major industrial and commercial player in the life science sector.
Founded through a collaboration between passionate individuals seeking to pull together regional health science assets, such as University of Washington Tacoma, MultiCare Health System, and Madigan Army Medical Center, RAIN seeks to find innovation for the betterment of the Tacoma community. This goal is accomplished through a variety of programs and resources that RAIN offers. RAIN is known most notably for their iGEM team, an international competition in creating genetically engineered machines, and the Superheroes of Science lecture series, which offers community members and students accessibility to hear and learn from scientists who are leaders in their fields.
“RAIN is important to me because it has given me the chance to develop my lab skills and work in a professional environment like those I hope to be a part of in the future. After being a part of both RAIN’s 2017 and 2018 iGEM teams, I feel that I’ve learned a number of basic and advanced skills that will help my career and allow me to give back to the community,” says Kian Croston, a Charles Wright Academy graduate, leader of RAIN’s iGEM team, and headed to John Hopkins University this fall.
New programs coming to RAIN include a Girls Who Code Club, seeking to close the gender gap in computer science, beginning September 19 and continuing weekly every Wednesday, and their Bioengineering Summer Camp. Both of these programs will be implemented to educate high school students interested in exploring the biotech and life sciences fields. These programs and events offer students a hands-on education that they can use throughout their future education and return to Tacoma to start or grow biotech companies.