April 12, 2021 (CAMBRIDGE, MA) – The Massachusetts Biotechnology Education Foundation (MassBioEd) announced it has received a grant from Pfizer in support of their new Life Sciences Apprenticeship program. The unique program, of which Pfizer a lead sponsor, is registered with the state as an apprenticeship and will use the apprenticeship model of technical education, on the job paid training and mentorship to create a new and diverse pool of skilled workers to meet the talent needs of Massachusetts’s growing life sciences industry. Combined with holistic individual support, individuals will gain industry recognized skills and work experience.

These Life Sciences Apprenticeships will provide candidates an alternative, accelerated pathway into an industry with jobs that offer career growth and family sustaining wages. Two occupations with high employer demand are targeted for the apprenticeships: Biomanufacturing Technicians and Clinical Trial Associates. MassBioEd is focused on recruiting candidates from underrepresented groups in the industry – including persons of color, women and veterans – and working with unemployed and under-employed individuals particularly those impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic who are seeking to make a job transition. 

The life sciences industry continues to grow in Massachusetts and across the country.  The need for skilled talent is greater than ever. At the same time, thousands of capable individuals are left out of these jobs because of a lack of awareness or traditional college degrees.  Apprenticeships are an exciting way to bridge this gap.  Pfizer’s commitment to finding and building diverse talent in our local communities is exceptional.  We are so grateful for their support of this new initiative and their joining us as an employer partner.” Sunny Schwartz, Executive Director of MassBioEd

“We are thrilled to begin this partnership with MassBioEd as lead sponsor of its new apprenticeship program along with several of our industry partners.  At Pfizer Andover, we believe that diversity is what drives our innovative spirit, and we are continuously seeking exceptional talent at all levels.  This groundbreaking program is a true “win-win” for both organizations, and we are excited to kick it off soon.”

Jon Tucker, Pfizer Andover Site Leader

Working closely with industry leaders, MassBioEd launched the program in January 2021. In the first two-year pilot term, 80 individuals will be trained as apprentices. Once accepted into the program, each candidate will receive 3-6 months of education and training prior to being placed in a one-year, full time, paid apprenticeship at supporting companies.

To learn more about MassBioEd’s Apprenticeship program, please contact BioTalent@massbioed.org.

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About the MassBioEd Foundation

The MassBioEd Foundation (MassBioEd) is a 501(c)(3) charitable non-profit organization. Its mission is to build a sustainable life sciences workforce in the region through educational programs that engage and excite teachers, inspire and propel students, and illuminate the pathway from the classroom to career with a focus on expansion, opportunity and diversity. Learn more: www.massbioed.org