Charles Tsan-Jian Chen, a world leader and entrepreneur in the biotech industry with more than four decades of accomplishments in developing, producing and implementing forefront vaccine and diagnostic technologies benefiting human and animal health, will be awarded an honorary doctoral degree from Temple University at the College of Science and Technology's graduation ceremony on Friday, May 12. The honorary degree and ceremonial hooding will be conducted by Temple University Board of Trustee members Solomon Luo, MD, and Barry Arkles, PhD, CST '70, '76. 

A citizen of Taiwan, Republic of China, Chen is founder and CEO of the publicly listed Medigen Vaccine Biologics Corp. (MVC) and the privately owned Sweitzer Biotech Co. of Taiwan. He is also a major investor of Taiwan Bio Therapeutics Inc., a company dedicated to regenerative medicine and cell therapy.

MVC, in collaboration with the U.S. National Institutes of Health and Dynavax Co., successfully developed a COVID-19 subunit vaccine that has been received by millions of people in Taiwan and several other countries. The vaccine, because of its excellent immunogenicity, safety profile and stability at elevated temperatures, is the first vaccine selected by the World Health Organization’s Solidarity Program for worldwide clinical trial and applications. In addition to COVID-19 and human influenza, MVC has also successfully developed the first vaccine for 2-month-old babies against EV71, a virus that infects millions of toddlers worldwide each year.

Chen received his BS in psychology from National Taiwan University in 1974. He has since self-taught to become an expert in vaccine and diagnostic technologies for human and animal diseases. He has coauthored dozens of scholarly papers in top journals such as The Lancet and Clinical Infectious Diseases.

Chen was a Chair Professor of Industry-Academia Collaboration at National Yangming Chiaotung University, one of the top universities in Taiwan. In 2015, he was appointed a Distinguished Adjunct Professor of Biotechnology in the Department of Biology at Temple University.

At the graduation ceremony in The Liacouras Center, Chen will also deliver the keynote address to CST's Class of 2023.