After a long hiatus sparked by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Promega Art Showcase will return next week with a new exhibition titled “A Vibrant Welcome Back!”
Promega Art Showcase
Why is a biotechnology company hosting an art show?
At its core, science is rooted in creativity. Scientists investigate the unknown and search for novel solutions that can improve our quality of life. We believe that observing and creating art reenergizes the imagination, inspiring scientists to look from new perspectives and step outside of the norms.
Promega has hosted quarterly art showcases in the BioPharmaceutical Technology Center since 1996. These showcases are open to the public and have featured the work of local, national and international artists. Past shows have included sculptors, folk artists, photographers, and painters. The December-March show each year features artwork by Promega employees and their family members.
The 2022 Summer Art Showcase features the work of Derrick Buisch, a painter and professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, alongside Bettina Madini, a European contemporary artist and fashion designer.
April 22, is Earth Day: A globally recognized annual event to demonstrate support for environmental protection and promote sustainability. Now, more than ever is the time for daring courage to align with this year’s theme: Invest in Our Planet.
Volunteering is willingly giving your time and effort without expecting something in return. The month of April is volunteer month, and April 20 is national volunteer recognition day, so we are taking this chance to celebrate volunteers and the work they do that benefits us all. Fundamentally, volunteering is about service to others, but that service can take on many different forms. Promega recognizes the benefits that volunteering brings to our employees as well as our local and global communities. Our Promega in Action program offers Madison-based employees the chance to volunteer their time and talents; applicants get up to 40 hours of extra paid time off to work with the charity or organization of their choice.
World Art Day embraces art as a means for nurturing creativity and innovation, gaining greater understanding of cultural experiences that are different from our own, and showcasing the contributions of art and artists to sustainable development. It is no accident that World Art Day is celebrated on the birthday of Leonardo da Vinci, the celebrated Italian polymath who used art to express emotions, articulate technological concepts well before their time, and understand the workings of human anatomy.
Takaski Mitachi, a moderator of the 2019 global conference panel on Innovation through Art: Leveraging Disruption for a Sustainable Ecosystem, said that “Art can add value so that we could drive innovation beyond logic and data.” In a sense, the fine arts are a way of expressing our observations about the world around us, similar to how an original scientific hypothesis attempts to explain phenomena we observe and want to test. While scientific investigation builds on data and logic to test a hypothesis, art gives us a different way of knowing our world that extends beyond just data and logic. When we explore the arts, we broaden our understanding and interpretation of the world and bring these new perspectives to our scientific and technological explorations. Art is a disruptor of staid ways of thinking about and approaching problems, and like many other disruptors in our world, it can drive innovation.
In an article in the MIT Technology Review, author Sarah Lewis discusses the relationship between the arts and scientific breakthroughs. She notes one study that found a disproportionately high number of Nobel Prize-winning scientists also pursue art, writing or music as serious avocations. When asked why achievement in art and science seem to go together, she replied: “What the arts allow us to do is develop the muscle required for discernment and also strengthen our sense of agency to determine for ourselves how we’re going to tackle a given problem…Ultimately it’s up to the person creating the work to determine what that path is, and that kind of agency is what’s required for innovation.”
Promega Corporation has been named among the best places to work in the USA with a 2022 Top Workplaces USA Award. The Top Workplaces USA list, announced on February 1, is a program run by research firm Energage to recognize high-performing companies based solely on employee engagement surveys. The surveys measure the level of connection, motivation, and commitment employees feel for their companies.
Energage believes that improving engagement can directly impact performance, innovation, retention, and talent attraction. The 2022 USA winner’s list is calculated by comparing the survey’s research-based statements to predict high performance against industry benchmarks.
I am able to perform science in an environment that makes me feel as though I’m growing as a researcher…
—Promega Employee Survey Response
A Culture of Work-Life Balance
Promega also earned a “culture badge” for Work-Life Balance. Employee feedback showed this factor to be the company’s strongest culture driver. Culture badges are earned for scores that are in the top 25% of organizations in the same benchmark.
Promega Director of HR Organizational Development, Darbie Miller points out how much Promega employees value the flexibility to flourish both at work and at home. “It is meaningful to all of us that employees continue to experience a culture that prioritizes flexibility to balance work and personal life. We are honored to receive this recognition and also to understand how to continue to evolve the employee experience at Promega.”
My co-workers care, I do work that makes me feel empowered, and I have the flexibility to be a real person with a real life.
—Promega Employee Survey Response
Promega offers welcoming careers where employees can stay, contribute and grow. We challenge our employees to change the world, to have more fun, to bring their full selves to work— in short, to take on a career that means more. At Promega, our employees do just that. Here, employees play a role in solving the world’s most pressing problems, experience camaraderie, gain satisfaction and get reward. We challenge ourselves to improve our local communities, to create an open, inviting and inclusive culture, to foster a work environment where collaborative givers, continuous learners, and ambitious go-getters thrive.
Our employees make an award like this possible, and we are grateful for the talent they bring every day. With an eye toward the future, we will continue to build on a culture that values science, sustainable business, and human well-being. We believe that every one of our employees has the potential to make a meaningful difference. And they do.
“It [my job] allows me to contribute to the betterment of mankind, the advancement of science, and success of my friends.”
—Promega Employee Survey Response
It [my role] allows me to be my natural, gifted, independent self while accomplishing the greater goals of the company and being part of something spectacular.
—Promega Employee Survey Response
Promega is a leader in providing innovative solutions and technical support to the life sciences industry. We are committed to science advancement for improving life in the global community. With branches in16 countries and over 50 global distributors serving over 100 countries
Our tools and technologies support a wide range of work. This includes cell biology, protein analysis, drug development, human identification, and molecular diagnostics. Promega products are used in labs for academic and government research, forensics, pharmaceuticals, clinical diagnostics, and agricultural and environmental testing.
Discover a career at Promega that will give you the opportunity you need to make a difference.
Are you a student who is exploring possible careers outside of academia? Industry has many opportunities for scientists. Read some of our careers blogs to learn more.
The past twelve months have, quite literally, been a year. As 2021 comes to a close, it’s that time to reflect on some of our most popular stories written by our Promega Connections bloggers from the past year. Take a look at five Promega blog posts that gave us a reason to celebrate in 2021.
This summer, Dr. Anette Leue, Director of Digital Marketing and PR Promega GmbH, represented Promega Corporation in Sustainability Day activities sponsored by Smart Lab Connects. Dr. Leue presented Promega Corporation’s corporate responsibility activities and joined a panel discussion about global responsibility with representatives from Eppendorf, Max Planck Sustainability Network, and NIUB Sustainability Consultants.
As the Sustainability Day activities progressed, what became apparent is that calls for sustainable business growth are coming from all directions. Customers of life sciences companies are asking, “what are you doing to be a responsible company”? And, employees also are asking the same question of their employers. This interest sustainability and global responsibility by customers, employees and local communities is bringing into sharp focus the activities of companies to be good corporate citizens. Sustainability and global responsibility programs are no longer nice extras for life science companies, but rather are requirements for doing business.
“Sustainability is not a “nice to have”, but something that should be intrinsically implemented in the companies.”
This blog post was cowritten by Sara Klink and Kari Kenefick.
Promega technical manuals have a new look! But never fear, our manuals still contain the protocol instructions for correctly using Promega products and include data, product and component storage information that you need to be successful at the bench. The cover art on our manuals now incorporates the use of imagery created by David Goodsell, which you can also find on our product boxes and at www.promega.com. The new cover image is being applied as we create new technical manuals or revise existing documents. Below are the old (left) and new (right) covers to compare:
Small- and medium-sized companies are critical to the Spanish economy. During 2020 the COVID-19 pandemic made business difficult for many of these companies, yet they have demonstrated strength and resourcefulness and have led the pandemic recovery in Spain in many ways. Recently, Promega Biotech Ibérica was recognized with a Madrid Community SME (small- and medium-sized business) Award along with 15 other companies. The awards were presented by Manuel Giménez, Minister of Economy, Employment and Competitiveness of the Madrid Region, Andres Navarro delegate director of La Razón, and Francisco Marhuenda, director of La Razón. As part of the award, Promega Biotech Ibérica General Manager, Gijs Jochems, was interviewed about the award and Promega’s work in the region.
According to Gijs Jochems, General Manager of Promega Biotech Ibérica, while Promega Corporation is an American multinational company, it remains privately held, which offers a great deal of flexibility to the subsidiaries to adapt to local needs. It also allows the company to place increased emphasis on employee well-being (critical during the pandemic), reinvest profits in research and development, and work to mitigate the impact of company activities on the environment. All these business practices reflect a long-term vision of sustainable business growth.
The past year has been a challenge. Amidst the pandemic, we’re thankful for the tireless work of our dedicated employees. With their support, we have continuously stayed engaged and prepared during all stages of the COVID-19 pandemic so that we can serve our customers at the highest levels.
How We Got Here
The persistent work by our teams has made a great impact on the support we can provide for scientists and our community during the pandemic. From scaling up manufacturing to investing in new automation, every effort has helped.
Promega has a long history of manufacturing reagents, assays, and benchtop instruments for both researching and testing viruses. When the pandemic began in 2020, we responded quickly and efficiently to unprecedented demands. In the past year, we experienced an approximately 10-fold increase in demand for finished catalog and custom products for COVID-19 testing. In response to these demands, we increased production lines. One year ago, we ran one shift five days per week. Currently, we run three shifts seven days per week. This change has allowed 50 different Promega products to support SARS-CoV-2 testing globally in hospitals, clinical diagnostic laboratories, and molecular diagnostic manufacturers. Additionally, our clinical diagnostics materials make up about 2/3 of COVID-19 PCR tests on the global market today. Since January 2020, Promega has supplied enough reagents to enable testing an estimated 700 million samples for SARS-CoV-2 worldwide.
Developments and Advances
Promega products are used in viral and vaccine research. This year, our technologies have been leveraged for virtually every step of pandemic response from understanding SARS-CoV-2 to testing to research studies looking at vaccine response.
We are extremely grateful for our employees. In the past year, we hired over 100 people and still have positions open today. While welcoming newcomers, this challenging year also reinforced the importance of our collaborative culture. Relationships at Promega have been built over multiple years. The long history of our teams allows us to stay coordinated while prioritizing product distribution to customers across the globe. It also leads to effective communication with colleagues and vendors. Those leading our manufacturing operations team, for example, have an average tenure of 15 years. Their history in collaborating through challenging situations helps them quickly focus where needed most.
Our 600 on-site employees support product manufacturing, quality, and R&D. They do it all while remaining COVID-conscious by social distancing, wearing masks, working split shifts, and restricting movement between buildings. While we continue to practice physical safety precautions, we also prioritize our employees’ mental health and wellness. Promega provides a variety of wellness resources including phone and video mental health sessions, virtual fitness and nutrition classes, and stress and anxiety tools.
What’s to Come
While we acknowledge that the COVID-19 is not over, we are proud of the support we have been able to provide to customers working both on pandemic research and critical research not related to COVID-19. Our policies of long-term planning and investing in the future has allowed us to respond quickly and creatively and learn from the experience.
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