In a lively and invigorating webinar on Tuesday, Seeding Labs hosted life sciences leaders to discuss how their sector can increase access and opportunity across the global scientific community as an essential way of business.
Spanning corporate social responsibility (CSR), sustainability, and STEM education in developing countries, the panel focused on the best ways to make a global impact.
Krystyna Hincman, Director of CSR at Cell Signaling Technology (CST), and Ryan Walker, Sustainability Program Leader at Cytiva, spoke about their journeys to effective relationship-building between the life sciences sector and NGOs working to make positive change.
For CST, this meant growing a CSR program from the ground up and getting individual employees involved in the process.
“We started our CSR program from the beginning 22 years ago,” Hincman explained. “Our company is a family-owned business, and giving back to the community is deeply rooted in the Comb family that owns our company.”
In the case of Cytiva, they had the opportunity to define themselves as being focused on sustainability and designed an outreach program to match that identity.
Walker explained how sustainability became a cornerstone of their CSR program: “As we looked at how we make an impact across society and the planet and how we do this for future generations to come, sustainability was one of our imperatives for our business. We are still new to sustainability, but I think we can all see that we are all in this journey together.”
For both, however, building CSR programs was intimately tied to their relationship with Seeding Labs. While both CST and Cytiva began as equipment donors, each has expanded and strengthened their connections to Seeding Labs and increased their impact worldwide.
“We are all fortunate with the resources we have, and we can all do a little bit more to make an impact across the globe,” explained Ryan Walker. “You are having an impact across 37 different countries. What organization can do that outside of a global organization like Seeding Labs, which is making an impact in communities around the world?”
The event was capped off by Aina Adeogun, PhD, professor of aquatic toxicology at Nigeria’s University of Ibadan. An Instrumental Access shipment arrived at her department in June 2019, bringing with it nearly 300 pieces of much-needed equipment. Since the equipment’s arrival, the department has seen a staggering increase in external funding, student retention, and published research.
The department, Dr. Adeogun explained, went from a teaching style that stressed theory to one that incorporated practical experience. “We were fully accredited for our biological sciences by the Nigerian Universities Commission in 2019. This was made possible when they came into our molecular biology lab and saw the equipment that was given to us and what we have been able to do with it,” she says.
“What I love most about our connection with Seeding Labs is that our program is built on relationship building. And that is exactly what Seeding Labs is doing with organizations and universities like Aina’s in Nigeria,” Hincman said with pride in response to Dr. Adeogun. “We love that CST can even be a small part of that story and that relationship building.”
We are grateful to Cytiva, Cell Signaling Technology, and all of our corporate partners who join us in our mission to empower every scientist to change the world.
If you would like to join this movement to support scientists like Dr. Adeogun, reach out directly to Rick Sherman, VP of Philanthropy at Seeding Labs.
“[Strong relationships are] really making a lot of impact,” Dr. Adeogun said to finish the hour. “You would be amazed. We need to work together more, we need more commitment so we can do more. We don’t know where the next innovation will come from, but it will come from this group.”
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