The High School Apprenticeship Challenge facilitates and funds paid internships for underrepresented and economically disadvantaged high school students throughout Massachusetts. The program creates over 100 new internship opportunities each year by subsidizing intern wages for small life sciences companies and academic researchers to enable them to hire paid interns. The program also offers a pre-internship laboratory training program for select school districts that provides rigorous biotechnology/biomedical and professional skills development.
The MLSC reimburses eligible host organizations up to $3,600 per intern, based on $15.00 per hour for six weeks of full-time work. Internships can be part-time or full-time and must take place between May 2022 and April 2023.
Impact on the Ecosystem
Since the program first launched in 2016, the MLSC has supported more than 470 internships at more than 110 life sciences companies and research institutions. Interns have represented 138 Massachusetts high schools and 325 students have participated in MLSC-sponsored lab training programs designed to better prepare them for internships. The program has been offered in Brockton, New Bedford, Worcester, and Cambridge (serving Boston, Cambridge, and Everett students) in partnership with the LEAH Knox Scholars Program.
The program seeks to create paid work-based learning opportunities for underrepresented youth, supplement life science education with rigorous OST training, foster relationships between economically disadvantaged schools and life sciences employers, develop students’ professional workplace skills, increase awareness of life sciences careers, and build a diverse STEM workforce pipeline.
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