Investing in the next generation of life science professionals is at the core of our mission. The Internship Challenge enhances the talent pipeline for the Massachusetts life sciences industry by creating hundreds of new internship opportunities each year for college students and recent graduates interested in life sciences careers. The workforce development program connects employers with prospective interns through an online platform and enables eligible companies to pay their interns for up to twelve weeks by subsidizing intern wages.
Internships can be part- or full-time and can take place throughout the 12-month Program Year, which runs from May 1 through April 30. Beginning May 1, 2023, the MLSC will reimburse eligible organizations at pay rates up to $20 per hour for a total reimbursement of up to $9,600 per intern. Also effective May 1, 2023, interns participating in this program must be paid at least $17 per hour.
As part of our commitment to increasing diversity, equity, and inclusion in the life sciences workforce, the MLSC also partners with Project Onramp and the UNCF Ernest E. Just Initiative to support internship opportunities for underrepresented students.
Impact on the Ecosystem
The Internship Challenge embodies our belief in the power of experiential learning to cultivate a workforce pipeline. As the longest-running program at the MLSC, the Internship Challenge has expanded the pool of prospective employees who have practical experience, increased opportunities for mentoring, and enabled more students from across the Commonwealth to explore careers in the life sciences industry. This initiative has reached every region of our state to the benefit of a diverse pool of talented young people.
The program creates new internship opportunities for college students and recent graduates by enabling small companies, of 100 employees or less, to hire paid interns. Since the program’s inception in 2009, the MLSC has funded more than 5,500 internships with more than 950 companies for students from 250 different academic institutions. Nearly 40 percent of interns that completed college were offered employment directly following their internship.
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