Westfield, Massachusetts– BioConnects New England (BCNE) and the Westfield State University Biology Department are excited to announce a partnership to create a robust biomanufacturing industry cluster in the New England region.
With this partnership, BioConnects New England and the Biology Department of Westfield State University aim to promote the growth and sustainability of the life sciences industry in New England through academic excellence and strategic programming. Additionally, BioConnects New England and Westfield State will work together toward the goal of building equity in biomanufacturing through community outreach initiatives and collaboration with local community members.
“We are excited to partner with Westfield State University,” said Jared Auclair, Ph.D., an associate dean at Northeastern University and director of their Biopharmaceutical Analysis Training Lab and co-lead of BioConnects New England. “Through their many programs that train future biomedical and biotech workforce members, as well as their location in western Massachusetts, nearby to biomedical research, development, and manufacturing companies and organizations, they offer many rich resources that will significantly advance our mission.”
“We look forward to working with BioConnects New England,” added Kimberly Berman, Ph.D., associate professor of biology at Westfield State University. “’Our connection with BCNE will bolster our training programs and especially our biotechnology concentration, while also opening up networking opportunities for our students and help them realize that STEM opportunities are for everyone.”
Through its grant challenge sponsored by the Economic Development Administration, BioConnects New England is leveraging its resources in the region to create a robust biomanufacturing industry. Massachusetts-based Northeastern University leads the coalition, which includes The Biopharmaceutical Analysis Training Laboratory at Northeastern University, The Roux Institute at Northeastern University in Portland, Maine, Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, Gloucester Marine Genomics Institute, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, -the I-195 Design & Innovation District in Providence, Rhode Island, the University of Rhode Island, and FocusMaine. The coalition will lead K-12 education and engagement activities, jumpstart prototyping and incubation facilities throughout the region, and invest in accessible start-up entrepreneurship programming.
ABOUT BIOCONNECTS NEW ENGLAND
BioConnects New England is a multi-state coalition and finalist of the Build Back Better Regional Challenge—a $1 billion program sponsored by the Economic Development Administration. Through this initiative, BioConnects New England will create a biomanufacturing cluster in the region of Massachusetts, Maine, and Rhode Island that have been historically excluded from the biotechnology industry, one of the fastest-growing sectors in New England with national importance. This coalition will connect hubs throughout New England to support existing—and establish new—biomanufacturing infrastructure as a pathway to increase employment and educational opportunities for underserved regions and populations.
ABOUT WESTFIELD STATE UNIVERSITY
Westfield State University’s 256-acre campus lies just west of Springfield in the beautiful Pioneer Valley of Massachusetts, surrounded by mountain views and tree-lined streets. Building on our founding vision as the first college in America offering an education without barriers of race, gender, or economic status, Westfield offers excellent undergraduate and graduate programs in liberal arts, sciences, and professional studies.