In an exciting development, Bioscience High School, part of the Phoenix Union High School District (PXU), has teamed up with the Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation’s LabForce initiative to introduce an innovative Laboratory Technician Development Program (LTDP) at Wexford Science and Technology’s Connect Labs in 850 PBC. This groundbreaking program is designed to equip students with the skills needed for the careers of tomorrow, marking a significant leap toward nurturing the next generation of lab technicians and STEM professionals.

The Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation (CEI), a venture created by GateWay Community College and the Maricopa County Community College District, has been at the forefront of providing incubation space for bioscience entrepreneurs in Phoenix. This new collaboration reaffirms CEI’s commitment to fostering innovation and educational excellence in the bioscience sector, offering practical, hands-on experiences to shape the future of bioscience industries in the region.

The Laboratory Technician Development Program (LTDP) at Bioscience High School is meticulously designed to provide students with a comprehensive, hands-on experience in laboratory practices. The program ensures that students are well-prepared to excel in lab environments, offering rigorous training and the opportunity to sit for the nationally recognized BACE exam (Biotechnician Assistant Credentialing Exam). This certification sets them on a path towards recognized excellence in the field, making them ready and qualified to work in a lab post-graduation.

A standout feature of this partnership is that after students acquire laboratory skills and pass the BACE exam, they begin internships with CEI LabForce partners in the community. This invaluable opportunity allows students to apply their classroom learning in real-world lab environments, helping them become career-ready. Students also explore opportunities aligned with their interests, enabling them to focus on their passion for laboratory work or combine it with different industries to create fields of the future.

Superintendent Thea Andrade of PXU expressed, “Real-world opportunities are life-changing for our students. The collaboration between Phoenix Union, GateWay Community College, and the Maricopa County Community College District provides our students with experiences that will propel them to a successful future in the biomedical field.”

Bioscience High School Principal Neda Boyce shared her enthusiasm: “The collaboration with the Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation has provided our bioscience students a profound opportunity to engage in meaningful scientific explorations within a real laboratory setting. Students who go through the lab tech program and attain BACE certification are positioned for job opportunities and are poised to excel as prospective candidates for positions within university research labs during their college years.”

CEI LabForce Executive Director Tom Schumann emphasized the importance of nurturing young talent in bioscience fields, stating, “We find these hands-on experiences develop self-confidence in students as they apply the skills they are learning in a real-world setting.”

This partnership enhances students’ educational experiences and contributes to the growth and development of the STEM workforce. By combining education, industry expertise, and real-world opportunities, this collaboration shapes the future of lab tech and STEM careers.

For more information about the Lab Tech Development Program or to schedule interviews with key stakeholders, please contact: Carly Figman Feinberg

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