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Shire PLC awards $25,000 grant for Quincy College 2016 Biotech Cohort

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May 06, 2016
Quincy, MA (4/20/16) - Shire has donated a $25,000 grant to support Quincy College's Biotechnology and Compliance (BTC) Program and the Jewish Vocational Services (JVS) Bridges to College program in Biotechnology, which builds a science and math foundation for students to enroll in Quincy College's BTC Certificate program.
JVS provides students with pre-college courses in science and math designed specifically for application in Quincy's 9-month Biotechnology & Compliance Certificate Program. The $25,000 Shire donation will support the JVS Bridges to College program.
"Our close relationship with Shire and our other industry partners has allowed us to create an educational pipeline that supports fundamental biomanufacturing skills, continued innovation in the field, and utilization of cutting edge technology and good manufacturing practices. This financial donation along with donations of equipment and supplies is a reflection of a great partnership between education and industry. Quincy College is fulfilling a need in the industry for not only qualified entry-level professionals but also supporting industry professionals with specialized and customized training. Quincy College's state-of-the-art biomanufacturing facility is uniquely positioned to support skill development for the Biotech industry," Bruce Van Dyke, Chair of the Biotechnology and Compliance Department at Quincy College.
There are many examples of the strong workforce development partnership between Quincy College and Shire, which reflect the benefits of industry and academic collaboration.  
Shire employee Ed Golloshi, Manufacturing Cell Culture Supervisor, is an Adjunct Professor at Quincy College, teaching a course for the BTC program. He has been with Shire for over 6 years bringing industry experience to the classroom.
Another great example of industry and academic collaboration is Shire employee Courtney Hewett, Operations Project Manager, who volunteers her time to contribute her expertise on Quincy College's Biotechnology and Compliance Curriculum committee which works to review and update curriculum to stay current with industry standards.  Courtney has been in the industry for ten years, eight of which are with Shire.  While visiting the Quincy College Biotechnology and Compliance facilities, Courtney recognized the potential for a short program focusing on the AKTA purification system that would fulfill a need for training at Shire.
Quincy College Biotechnology and Compliance Program graduates have found success at Shire as well. Alex Wilson, a graduate of the BTC program, is a Manufacturing Technician II at Shire.  He grew up in Dorchester, enrolled in a 4 year college and part-way through realized it wasn't for him.  That's when he discovered Quincy College.  He has been at Shire for 3 years now.
Sophanarith (Sop) Am graduated from the BTC program in 2014.  Sop grew up in Chelsea and initially pursued a certificate in IT.  He landed a job at a large company as a System Administer.  Unfortunately, IT was eventually outsourced and he lost his job. Instead of applying for another IT job, Sop changed career paths and decided to attend Quincy College after hearing about the booming Biotech industry.  Two years later, he completed the program and began work in the biotech industry.
"A highly trained and skilled workforce is essential to Shire and is one of the reasons Shire has located our US Operational Headquarters in Massachusetts," said Pat Sacco, Shire's head of Internal Manufacturing. "While Massachusetts has a talented pool of workers, we believe it is important to partner with educational institutions and workforce development non-profits to ensure that students are acquiring  the specialized skills needed in an ever changing biotech industry.  We are proud of the relationship that we have with Quincy College and the Shire employees that have come through their program."
"Quincy College and Shire are creating a dedicated pipeline of skilled biomanufacturing workers in response to industry demand. Together, we are positively impacting the career trajectory of many who currently work in the biotechnology industry, who are considering this career path, and many of whom have gone on to work in other biotech companies throughout the Commonwealth. The continued generosity of Shire has ensured that we will continue to develop a successful biotechnology workforce." continued Bruce Van Dyke, Chair of the Quincy College program.  
For more information about the Quincy College Biotechnology and Compliance program, please visit: www.quincycollege.edu/btc.
Katy Johnson