Quincy College Opens New Biotech Labs

September 17, 2013

By: Don Seiffert

On Wednesday, the brand-new Quincy College Biotechnology & Compliance Program showed off its new, 1,600-square-foot lab headquarters in downtown Quincy.

The lab was built with a $3 million federal grant from the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Grant Program, and a $100,000 grant from the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center. According to Taggart Boyle, spokesperson for the college, it occupies renovated space inside of the college’s Saville Hall.

The program is designed to train students for careers in biotech, an area in which employment has grown 12 times faster in the state than all other forms of employment, according to a recent report by industry group MassBIO. In addition to the laboratory, the grant money will also go to curriculum development, purchasing equipment and supplies and hiring of new faculty members for the program.

“The opening of the Biotechnology and Compliance laboratory is the culmination of our focus on interaction with both government and private industry to provide education and training for our students that result in employment opportunities,” said Peter Tsaffaras, president of Quincy College, in a statement.

Quincy College says it will be the first to integrate a virtual lab in its biomanufacturing program, where students can learn to program and operate equipment on-line and in 3D in preparation for hands-on training. The U.S. Department of Labor gave the college $450,000 for the virtual lab.

The college has partnered with a slew of local organizations, including Shire Human Genetic Therapies, Lonza Biologics, Xcellerex and Millennium Pharmaceuticals Inc., a Takeda company, all of which helped develop the program. Educational partners include Boston University and UMass Boston, which will admit biotech students into bachelor degree programs to continue their studies.