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Goodbye, for now

4 years

330 participants and alumni

29 teams

11 universities 

1 in person showcase with over 100 attendees, spanning Universities, CSIRO, VC and SynBio associated industries


Not bad for a volunteer-led effort!


However, it is with a heavy heart that we are announcing the Aus SynBio Challenge will be taking a hiatus in 2024. Despite our passion for the Challenge and the engagement we received throughout the program, we have been unsuccessful with our fundraising attempts and haven’t been able to find the right partners to continue the delivery of the Challenge in 2024. 


This is a shame, as we feel we have created an accessible program for students to engage in SynBio, learn practical skills that often aren’t taught as part of their core curriculum, and introducing talented students and their mentors to a whole new world of network opportunities that could help shape our future bioeconomy. We have received significant verbal and social support from alumni and major organisations in the community. For some, the AusSynBio Challenge was their first introduction to SynBio which we absolutely love! However, we have been unable to secure financial or operational support which has ultimately led to our decision to pause the challenge in 2024 while we explore other ways of delivering entrepreneurship and networking programs in the field of biological engineering.


We do want to thank our sponsors over the years, you have been instrumental in bringing this program to fruition and helped deliver something amazing! In particular, we’d like to thank CSIRO and the Australian National University for providing funding for the 2023 AusSynBio Challenge, which enabled us to have an incredible program manager as well as in-kind support to host the Final Showcase event. 


We also received very welcome support from our other major sponsors:


ARC Centre of Excellence in Synthetic Biology

Macquarie University

Main Sequence Ventures

Integrated DNA Technologies

New England BioLabs

Twist BioScience

Decode Science

UNSW SynBio 10x

Illumina for Startups

Nourish Ingredients

East West Capital


And many more…


We are also incredibly grateful to all the organisations that have provided support through webinars and morning tea’s with the teams. There are too many to name, but we’d like to send a shout out to Blackbird who ran multiple webinars and allowed the teams to join their Giants program. Thank you all so much for your support! 


Last but not least, we’d like to send a huge thanks to all who volunteered to help run the Challenge during the past 4 years. It truly takes a village and we are grateful to have found ours along the way. Thank you to everyone who has been part of our network since we began - truly, without you we wouldn’t have made it this far and we’re grateful that you spent time helping us build the Challenge. We hope to stay connected with you all as we design what is coming next! 


If you are someone who wants to see the challenge or an alternate version of it maintained - reach out! We would love to chat with you and brainstorm how to bring biology to the masses!!


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