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Johns Hopkins Relocating Biotech Center Out Of Montgomery County

Johns Hopkins' Rockville campus at 9601 Medical Center Drive
Johns Hopkins' Rockville facility at 9601 Medical Center Drive

As Montgomery County leaders look to bolster the area's talent pipeline to support a growing life sciences market, the county is losing a major educational asset.

Johns Hopkins University plans to move its Center for Biotechnology Education, a facility that supports 275 graduate students, out of Rockville to consolidate it at the university's main campus in Baltimore, Johns Hopkins Director of Campus, Government and Community Affairs Leslie Ford Weber told Bethesda Magazine

The university plans to complete the consolidation by the end of next summer. The Rockville graduate center offers six master's degrees in health sciences and biotechnology, sectors that have emerged as an economic engine for Montgomery County over the last several years. 

The region has been ranked as a top five biotech market in the U.S. in large part because of companies clustering on the I-270 corridor near the National Institutes of Health and other federal agencies. But local leaders and market experts say the county needs more educational institutions to support the talent pipeline those companies need to grow. 

"We're the No. 4 biotech region in the country, it's amazing that we're No. 4 without a major educational research facility," Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich said last week at Bisnow's I-270 Life Sciences and Biotech Corridor event

Johns Hopkins Senior Advisor Christy Wyskiel, also speaking at last week's event before the closure was announced, said workforce development is an important part of creating a top life sciences market. 

"The reality is the situations that happen in the regions that are winning were strategic, they were intentional, and they really did a good job with the entire wraparound of services from real estate to workforce development to engaging anchor institutions," Wyskiel said.