The Collegiate Success Institute (CSI) Worcester served approximately 175 Worcester Public School juniors and seniors in collaboration with college partners Anna Maria, Assumption, Clark, Holy Cross and Worcester State, and corporate partners Unum, Hanover Insurance, EBS Foran, and Morgan Stanley.
Integrating education with the life sciences workforce
Release Date:February 24, 2009
The event explored the topic of workforce needs in the biomedical, biotech, and health professions fields and the resources needed for educating that workforce.
Panelists were: Jean Jackson, vice president for workforce planning, Baystate Health; Lois Schiappa, human resources, Cubist Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; Angelique Torres, Genzyme Corporation; Dr. Susan Windham-Bannister, president and CEO, Massachusetts Life Sciences Center; Diane Bennett, Saint Vincent Hospital; and Patricia G. Webb, senior vice president and chief human resources officer, UMass Memorial Health Care. Kevin O'Sullivan, president and CEO, Mass. Biomedical Initiatives, Inc., served as panel moderator.
All panelists agreed that an important workforce development priority is to find skilled workers who are capable of performing a variety of tasks. According to the panel, the most successful workers in life sciences fields are those that have a strong science or math background but also possess problem solving, critical thinking and team-building skills which allow them to spread their talents across all aspects of the organization. The panel also stressed the importance of internships in gaining people skills and building future work relationships.
Over the next five to 10 years, cultural competence and the ability to interact and communicate with a diverse population were also key workforce needs identified by the panel.
"Massachusetts' product is innovation and brainpower," said O'Sullivan. "We are dependent on all educational levels to provide us with the workers we will need within the life sciences industry to prosper within the global economy in the future."