Photos and Testimonials from Internship Challenge Participants

  • Ginkgo Bioworks

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    Lily Fitzgerald working in Ginkgo Bioworks labs on applying engineering principles to making new and useful organisms (Photo courtesy of Barry Chin)

    “During my internship at Ginkgo Bioworks, I built custom biological organisms on a factory scale, used manufacturing principles to improve the science of genetic engineering, and worked to streamline and automate laboratory processes. This internship gave me incredible, first-hand exposure to cutting-edge industry science. I learned an entirely new field, and ultimately obtained a full time position at Ginkgo, where I continue to grow and learn as an Engineer on the Build team. The work at this company is so inherently interdisciplinary, requiring me to think about physics, computer science, chemistry, and biology simultaneously and to collaborate with brilliant specialists across many fields. I know that my time in the multi-disciplinary UMass iCons Program has been instrumental to my success at Ginkgo, and I continue to draw on the skills and attitudes I acquired as an iCons student. MLSC, UMass iCons, and Ginkgo Bioworks have given me an incredible start to my career in science.”

    – Lily Fitzgerald, UMass Amherst, class of 2014

  • Persomics USA, Inc.

    “I’d like to thank the MLSC for the support we received under the internship program. It gave us the opportunity to find excellent scientists, bring them in as interns and finally take them on as full time hires. We really appreciate that opportunity.”

    – Neil Emans, Chief Executive Officer, Persomics USA, Inc.

  • Unchained Labs

    “During my time at Unchained Labs, I had the opportunity to work closely alongside two post-doctoral colleagues who served as mentors for me as I collected data from the product instrument and devised novel methods of removing background noise from sample readings. I also had the fascinating opportunity to observe up close the acquisition of AVIA Biosystems by Unchained Labs. My internship gave me an excellent view into the exciting challenges and day-to-day life in industry, and allowed me to further develop and apply the skills I have learned in the classroom. I am grateful to Unchained Labs and the MLSC for this opportunity, and also to the UMass iCons Program, which prepared me to hit the ground running in my internship through training at UMass Amherst on real-world problems in multi-disciplinary teams.”

    – John Vetrano, UMass Amherst Class of 2016

  • AdvanDx

    My experience with the Mass Life Sciences Center’s Internship Challenge was a monumental part of my college career. Summer going into my senior year was the ideal time to get some supplemental experience in my field, outside of the classroom. I was fortunate to get an opportunity working for a diagnostics company doing laboratory operations work. My job duties were versatile enough so that I got experience in a health science setting via microbiology but also in a commercial setting via customer communication. Receiving an internship position through Mass Life Sciences has shaped me this past summer, now during my senior year, and will work with me for the future.
    Thank you, MLSC!

    – Michaela Scutti, James Madison University Class of 2016, Intern at AdvanDx.

  • Acetylon Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

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    Intern Morgan Jordan (center) and her team at Acetylon Pharmaceuticals.

    “We joined the MLSC Internship Challenge program last summer and found two awesome kids, one in biology and one in chemistry, who enriched our company and they told us their experience was wonderful for them in a hands-on way. For example, sitting in a classroom is a lot different than working in a real lab. We will definitely pursue some new interns this next season. We are hearty supporters of this program!”

    – Elaine Larsen, Finance Manager at Acetylon Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

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