The Biomedical Laboratory and Clinical Sciences (BLCS) program started in 1987 at Boston University to provide a Bachelor of Science degree and advanced certificates, including one in Biotechnology. The nine month certificate program has been successful in producing qualified individuals for entry-level jobs in Boston area biomanufacturing companies. The Undergraduate Certificate in Biotechnology is designed for professionals requiring additional skills and knowledge. Students must complete a minimum of 16 credits. The BLCS offers evening and Saturday classes to accommodate working adults, plus there are on-line options. Courses include Current Good Manufacturing Practices and Quality Assurance; Techniques in Molecular Biology; Proteomics; Human Genetics; and Cell Culture Techniques. During any one semester about 250 students will take biotech courses, with about 35 matriculated students and 50 registered for certificates.
About 35 percent are employed in biomanufacturing jobs such as Manufacturing Technician- Upstream, Downstream; Chemistry QC Technician; QA Documentation Coordinator; Environmental Health & Safety Technician; Facilities Technician. Companies that hire graduates for biomanufacturing include Genzyme, Biogen, and TKT/Shire Pharmaceuticals. Another biomanufacturing related program offered through BLCS is CityLab Academy, a nine month, postsecondary job skills and education program offering 12 free credits to accepted candidates. Started in 1992, CityLab Academy www.bu.edu/CityLabAcademy provides experiences in modern biotech and its commercial applications. It arranges internships at several medical centers, hospitals and biotech companies in the Boston area. Since 1999, 14 out of 40 graduates of City Lab Academy who found jobs in the biomedical field have worked or are currently working in biomanufacturing.