Ivy Tech Community College has selected Sarah Cote, associate professor of biotechnology, as the 2016 recipient of the Glenn W. and Mary Catherine Sample Award for Excellence in Instruction. The award is Ivy Tech’s highest honor for a faculty member.

“I want to congratulate Sarah for earning this prestigious statewide instructional award,” said Chancellor Jennie Vaughan. “Her commitment to student learning and job placement, serving the community, and bringing resources to campus for life sciences initiatives truly represents the mission of the college.”

Cote’s selection as the statewide award recipient was announced Tuesday, April 19 in Indianapolis at an awards reception for recipients of the college’s annual President’s Awards to outstanding faculty, of which Cote was named for the Bloomington region. Of all President’s Award recipients around the state, one winner is chosen to receive the Glenn W. and Mary Catherine Sample Award. This honor includes a $1,000 stipend for instructional equipment and a $5,000 personal development grant.

Cote’s nominations highlighted her commitment to student learning and her engaging classroom style. She implements an environmental science service-learning project and hosts the Super Science Saturday event each year, which attracts 200 to 300 participants from the community to Ivy Tech’s Indiana Center for the Life Sciences. Cote is an integral part of the grant writing team for biotechnology programming at Ivy Tech Bloomington.

“Our Associate of Applied Science in Biotechnology program works to provide a steady pipeline of educated workers for the biotech industry,” Cote said. “Of the 52 AAS graduates in Biotechnology, 41 are working in a biosciences relevant position or have decided to continue their education in the biosciences. That’s nearly 80 percent of our graduates.”

Interns and graduates of Ivy Tech Bloomington’s biotechnology program are employed at Cook Pharmica, BioConvergence, Baxter, Bradford Soap Works, Ivy Tech Community College, AB Biotechnologies, and Upland Brewery. Additionally, students work at other locations outside of the Bloomington area such as Eli Lilly and Dow Agrosciences.

“At AB Biotechnologies, two thirds of workers are graduates of our biotechnology program,” Cote said.

AB Biotechnologies expects to have 20-25 new biotech jobs available in the coming year.

By 2017, Cook Pharmica predicts it will need to fill 70 new biotech positions.

In addition to the AAS in Biotechnology that prepares students for careers, Ivy Tech Bloomington offers an Associate of Science in Biotechnology, which is designed to transfer seamlessly to Indiana University’s biotechnology bachelor’s degree program.

Cote holds a Master of Science degree from Virgina Tech in Entomology with specialization in Aquatic Entomology (2000). She completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Science at The Ohio State University and graduated Cum Laude with distinction (1998). She is certified in Quality Assurance/Control for the Drug and Biologic Industry and Regulatory Affairs Essentials from University of California, San Diego Extension (2009). She began her career at Ivy Tech Bloomington in 2003. Previously, she worked in environmental services and consulting in Virginia, and as chief biologist for Virginia Save our Streams.

This is the second time a Bloomington faculty member has earned the college’s highest honor.

The Glenn W. and Mary Catherine Sample Award is given annually to a full-time faculty member of the college who best typifies the teaching and learning mission of the college. The Glenn W. and Mary Catherine Sample Award is named in honor of Ivy Tech’s fourth president, Glenn W. Sample, who also had served on its first board of trustees, co-founded Ivy Tech Foundation, and was the Foundation board’s first chairman. Ivy Tech established the award in 1980.

About Ivy Tech Community College

Ivy Tech Community College is Indiana's largest public postsecondary institution and the nation's largest singly accredited statewide community college system, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana and also serves thousands of students annually online. It serves as the state's engine of workforce development, offering associate degrees, long- and short-term certificate programs, industry certifications, and training that aligns with the needs of the community. The College provides a seamless transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana, as well as out of state, for a more affordable route to a bachelor's degree.