The organization was created in 1991 as a successful public/private partnership to enhance Maryland’s bioscience industry and infrastructure through the construction of a state-of-the-art multi-tenant biomanufacturing facility in Baltimore. Originally known as the Maryland Bioprocessing Center, Inc., and later MdBio Foundation, Inc., the organization channeled revenue from facility lease payments into the development and promotion of Maryland’s commercial bioscience industry.
Beginning in 1997, MdBio expanded its reach by creating education programs aimed to spark students’ interest in science and to raise awareness of science careers throughout the state. MdBio was instrumental in the continued growth of Maryland’s bioscience industry, providing companies with financial support, business development consulting services, cost sharing and group purchasing opportunities, and education and workforce development programs. The bioprocessing center was sold in 2009.
In 2019, the organization adopted the name Learning Undefeated to more accurately reflect the work that it has been doing nationally.
Today, Learning Undefeated enhances STEM education through a diverse set of programs, including the flagship mobile laboratory program, and other celebrated STEM education programs such as the Young Science Explorers Program for middle school students, ATLAS College & Career Symposium, student competitions, afterschool programs, and tech-infused education such as serious gaming, virtual reality, and the Internet of Things.
Thought Leader in Mobile STEM Education
Learning Undefeated launched its mobile lab program in 2003 – first with the MdBioLab and more recently with the newer, larger Mobile eXploration Lab – with a focus on providing educational opportunities featuring the latest tools and technologies to Maryland high school students. In 2016 the program expanded, when Learning Undefeated was awarded two multi-million dollar grants from Verizon to operate the explorer lab, a national mobile STEM lab program focused on engineering and engineering design.
In 2017, moved by a piece on the evening news, the Learning Undefeated team saw an opportunity to take its MdBioLab to Southeast Texas to help schools that were damaged or destroyed during Hurricane Harvey. Initially raising funds from Maryland companies to send the lab to Texas for two weeks, the program has received more than $2 million to teach students onboard the mobile lab at schools between Corpus Christi and Houston.
For the 2019/2020 school year, Learning Undefeated introduced a new mobile lab concept called Drop Anywhere Labs: custom outfitted shipping containers converted to mobile labs and designed to offer engaging, immersive and hands-on educational experiences and resources for students and teachers alike. Smaller, lighter, and less expensive than trailer labs, Drop Anywhere Labs offer a blend of career and skills education, providing flexible in-classroom resources that empower teachers and serve up to four classes simultaneously.
Digital & Hybrid Learning
Learning Undefeated adapted its programming beginning March 2020 to provide authentic STEM distance learning resources, turnkey experiences for teachers to use in their own digital classrooms at no cost. Program components include real-time, mobile-friendly access to standards-aligned laboratory investigations, multimedia STEM resources, collaborative assignment tools, interactive assessments, virtual professional development for educators, and support for parents as educators at home. Our team also developed At-Home Science Kits, virtual STEM professional guest speaker engagements, classroom loaner kits, and select in-person engagement opportunities through classroom and mobile STEM laboratory visits.
Drawing from the lessons learned during this time, several of our programs now include digital and hybrid components as a core offering or learning extension, allowing us to reach students who would not otherwise have been served as well as follow-on opportunities. A major win during this period was a renewed corporate focus on digital volunteerism, which we have incorporated extensively into hybrid programming that introduces students to a vast network of STEM professionals whom they would never have been able to meet in the physical world. As we continue to adapt the “new norm” of hybrid learning, the need for both in-person and virtual learning experiences will continue to grow.