Scholarships available for Ohio bioinformatics students Program aims to position Ohio as a national leader in emerging field

Columbus, Ohio (September 4, 2009) – As college students return to classes for the fall term, many are looking for any financial assistance that might be available. For those studying a combination of biology, computer science and information technology – a field known as bioinformatics – there are significant scholarships still available.

The Ohio Consortium for Bioinformatics, a partnership involving the Ohio Supercomputer Center, the Ralph Regula School of Computational Science, Ohio University, 11 other colleges, universities and industry leaders, aims to position Ohio as a national leader in the emerging field of bioinformatics. The consortium is offering scholarships to attract and graduate an estimated 345 students in bioinformatics over a five-year period.

Bioinformatics merges biology, computer science and information technology into a single discipline that relies on high performance computing to analyze large amounts of data. It can assist in efforts as diverse as finding cures for diseases, making advances in agriculture and enhancing industrial opportunities. The need for bioinformatics -- one of the fastest-growing areas in science -- has been driven by the vast amount of data that now can be generated by such technologies as DNA sequencing.

The bioinformatics program provides scholarships and educational opportunities for students interested in pursuing a career in bioinformatics or related fields. The scholarship provides $4700 per year to incoming freshmen, transfer students, upperclassmen or graduate students who are Ohio residents and demonstrate academic excellence and an interest in the field. Application materials and additional information about the scholarship can be found on the Web at: www.rrscs.org/bioinformatics.

In 2008, the Ohio Board of Regents awarded the consortium $4.475 million for student scholarships as part of the $50 million Choose Ohio First scholarship program, a component of the Ohio Innovation Partnership created by the Ohio General Assembly to help make Ohio a global leader in the new economy.

The Ohio Supercomputer Center is a catalytic partner of Ohio universities and industries that provides a reliable high performance computing infrastructure for a diverse statewide/regional community. Funded by the Ohio Board of Regents, OSC promotes and stimulates computational research and education in order to act as a key enabler for the state's aspirations in advanced technology, information systems, and advanced industries. For additional information, visit http://www.osc.edu.