Bioversity’s free workforce training program – Biotech Career Foundations – launched on January 2024 at our dedicated workforce training center in the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston. Available to anyone who is over 18 and has a high school degree, this program prepares people in the soft and technical skills necessary to be hired into entry-level scientific operations roles at local life sciences companies. Learn more about the program and application process below. Or apply today!
Program Details (Click on the questions for answers)
Where does this training program take place? How do I get there? Is there parking?
The Biotech Career Foundations classes all take place at Bioversity’s training center in Dorchester at 135 Morrissey Blvd. (at the Southline Boston development of the old Boston Globe building). The brand-new, 4,000 square foot space is part classroom, part fully-functional scientific laboratory. Students can access the center by car with ample free parking or on the Red Line via a short walk to the UMass/JFK stop.
Do I have to pay to participate in this training program?
No, the training program is free.
Does Bioversity provide any wraparound services or support such as childcare or transportation?
Students admitted to Bioversity’s training program – Biotech Career Foundations – will be provided a $500 a week stipend payment while they are participating in the program. Our intention is that this generous stipend payment can help students cover the costs of things like childcare or transportation that could be a barrier to participation in this program.
What is the training program schedule?
Classes run Monday through Thursday from 9am to 3pm for eight weeks with the first program launching January 8, 2024 and running through February 29th, 2024. We are currently recruiting for our second cohort which launches March 11. Please apply today.
Who is teaching this course?
Faculty from the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences will be teaching this course. Their work will be supplemented by people who work in the life sciences industry who are volunteering their time to help train and provide professional development.
What are the class dates?
Bioversity plans to run five cohorts of Biotech Career Foundations during 2024. The first cohort will start on January 8th, 2024 and end on February 29th, 2024. The second cohort will run March 11th – May 2nd. We will announce additional cohort dates in the future.
What are the expectations about class attendance? What if I need to miss a day?
Students accepted into the program are expected to attend every day for the full duration of the program (32 total class days). Excused absences will be considered on an individual basis. Unexcused absences are not permitted and may result in students being asked to leave the program if attendance becomes an on-going issue.
Do I need a computer or access to the internet to participate in the training program?
Bioversity can loan students a laptop for use during the time they are in the training program. For any computer work done outside the classroom we encourage students to utilize the free wi-fi available in the building where the training center is located (Southline Boston) or other locations such as public libraries.
Does this program have homework?
There is some homework. The program is designed to be done mostly in-person at the training facility in Dorchester. There will be some additional learning required outside of the Monday – Thursday (9am – 3pm) window.
Do I receive a certificate or degree upon graduation?
Students who successfully complete the program will be awarded a Certificate of Completion from Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences and Bioversity. To earn the certificate, participants will need to adhere to program policies and pass a series of assessments woven throughout the program. Per best practice, assessments will take a variety of forms including demonstrations, multiple choice and short essay quizzes and completion of mini-projects.
What does the application process entail?
The first step of the process is to apply through the application form on this website. Bioversity staff will review each application and reach out individually to discuss the program in more detail and learn more about why the person is interested in the class via a 15 minute virtual meeting. If Bioversity staff and the applicant agree it could be a good fit, the next step is for the applicant to come in-person to Bioversity’s site in Dorchester to have an in-person interview.
If I don’t get accepted into the first class, can I be considered for future classes?
Absolutely. Bioversity will be enrolling five separate classes of 20-24 people over the course of 2024. We will keep you application on file and consider you for future classes if you are not accepted the first time around.
How many people are in each class?
We will be enrolling 20-24 people in each class. Over the course of 2024, we plan to enroll five separate, eight-week classes.
Is there a minimum or maximum age to participate?
Students must be at least 18 years old to participate but there is no maximum age.
Do I need any scientific experience or background?
No. Candidates to join Bioversity’s training program only need to be 18 or older and have a high school degree or equivalent – no scientific background required. We are looking for people who are eager to join a growing industry and pursue an exciting career in scientific operations.
I am a senior in high school graduating in 2024. Can I apply to be part of this program?
Absolutely. If you are interested in joining the training program after you graduate high school, please consider applying as we get nearer to your graduation date and include a note in the application form about your circumstances and timing.
I have a criminal record. Can I take part in this training program?
We welcome people with criminal records to apply for the training program with the understanding that each life sciences employer treats criminal records differently when considering whether or not to hire an individual candidate. Of note, due to Massachusetts’ “Ban the Box” law there are strict rules about what Massachusetts employers can and cannot ask of candidates during the hiring process. This law in designed to encourage more employers to hire people with a criminal record. Learn more about those details here.
I don’t live in Boston, can I still apply?
Yes. Bioversity’s site in Dorchester is designed to service the immediate neighborhood and its surrounding communities but if you are interested in the program and can travel to Dorchester during the program every day, please submit an application.
Job Placement and Advancement
Are graduates of Bioversity’s training program guaranteed a job after graduation?
While graduates are not guaranteed a job after completing the Biotech Career Foundations program, Bioversity does provide career placements services to graduates to assist them in finding suitable positions in the local life sciences industry. Bioversity is busy gaining commitments from local employers to include Bioversity graduates in the recruitment plans for relevant entry-level talent.
What jobs does the Biotech Career Foundations program prepare graduates to be hired into?
This certificate training program is designed to prepare people with a high school degree to be work-ready upon graduation in scientific operations roles at local life sciences companies. These jobs, such as lab operations associate, support the operations of scientific laboratories through work including experiment prep, supply chain, inventory and procurement, facilities management, and hazardous waste removal. These mission critical jobs pay in a range from $18 – $25 an hour with full benefits.
Can I be promoted from entry-level with only a high school degree and this certificate? What if I want to pursue a 2-year or a 4-year college degree after graduation?
Yes! Many companies promote entry-level talent with only a high school degree into more advanced positions. However, if Bioversity graduates want to continue their educational journey, we fully encourage that. To make paying for the 1st semester of college easier, we offer a $2,000 tuition voucher upon acceptance to a partnered educational institution. And there’s a new state law making community college free for residents over 25 years old.