National Science Foundation awards Concordia College $2.5 million grant for STEM scholarships – InForum


MOORHEAD – The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded Concordia College $2.5 million to prepare lower-income students for careers in biotechnology by offering significant scholarships and industry opportunities.

With the grant, the college has created the Concordia Leads: Instructing and Mentoring in Biotechnology (CLIMB) program. In fall 2024, 2025, and 2026, 12 incoming students will receive up to $15,000 annually.

The scholarship can be applied on top of other scholarships to potentially cover the full cost of attending Concordia College, including room and board. It is open to academically talented students with a demonstrated financial need who are interested in pursuing careers in biotechnology.

Eligible programs of study include biology, chemistry, computer science, environmental and sustainability studies, mathematics, neuroscience, physics, and pre-engineering.

The program includes mentorship at the college, research opportunities with faculty, and paid internships in the biotechnology field.

“CLIMB will allow us to take what we do best at Concordia — teaching and mentoring students — and team up with partners in the local biotechnology industry to prepare these students for careers in a field that offers tremendous opportunities both in our region and across the country,” said Dr. Mark Jensen, chemistry professor and principal investigator of the NSF grant.

Biotechnology is a multidisciplinary field that uses living cells or molecules derived from living cells in a wide array of applications, from human and animal health to food, agriculture, and the environment. Fargo-Moorhead has seen incredible growth in these industries and needs highly skilled employees to meet its needs.

Three biotechnology companies have partnered with Concordia for the CLIMB program. They include: Agathos Biologics, a company developing transformational science in biomanufacturing, biologic payload delivery, and cell and gene therapy; Aldevron, a premier manufacturing partner of high-quality plasmid DNA, mRNA, proteins, and other key components for the development of vaccines, gene and cell therapies, immunotherapies, and molecular diagnostics and Genovac Antibody Discovery, a contract research and manufacturing organization specializing in antibody discovery and production of new transformative drugs and diagnostics.

Interested students can learn more and apply at

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