MLSC Launches 2011 Internship Challenge

January 7, 2011

The Massachusetts Life Sciences Center has launched the 2011 Internship Challenge, a workforce development program that is focused on enhancing the talent pipeline for Massachusetts companies engaged in life sciences. The program, now in its third year, facilitates the placement of students and recent graduates who are considering career opportunities in the life sciences in paid summer internships across the state.  Consistent with the Center’s role as a catalyst in growing the talent needed by the life sciences industry, the Internship Challenge is designed to provide students and companies with the tools to connect, and the Center will reimburse eligible companies for intern stipends.

Objectives of the Internship Challenge include expanding the pool of prospective employees who have practical experience, enhancing opportunities for mentoring, enabling more students to explore career opportunities despite the challenging economic environment, and providing to students interested in working in the life sciences a peer network through educational and informational networking events.

Last year’s Internship Challenge program was again met with extraordinary success, receiving nearly 900 applications and placing 170 interns at 94 companies throughout Massachusetts. Of those interns, 37 reported being hired for full or part time jobs following their internship!

Photo courtesy of Bay State Banner/Sandra Larson

"The MLSC-sponsored internship allowed me to work for Ginkgo Bioworks, a biotech start-up, during its infancy. At this early stage of development, scarce funds could have prevented them from hiring me. Working for them during this period gave me the chance to make significant contributions to several exciting projects and allowed me a great introduction to the challenges of founding a start-up. The experience has encouraged me to bring my life sciences background to the business sector."

– Matt Gethers, Internship Challenge participant and MIT graduate with a degree in biological engineering.

How the Program Works

Students that are looking for an internship in the life sciences will need to complete an online application (link below), which includes their resume and a cover letter, identifying their academic background and the industry subsector in which they are looking to intern.  Representatives from companies looking to host interns will review these applications and select candidates with the qualifications that are most suited to their needs.  The Center recommends that internships are full-time over a 12-week period and the Center will reimburse companies for pay rates of up to $15 per hour.

Eligibility Requirements

Prospective host companies must be located in Massachusetts and have no more than 100 employees in order to receive a reimbursement from the Center for intern stipends. Larger companies are still encouraged to participate in the program, however cannot request a subsidy from the Center. Companies are expected to provide a meaningful internship opportunity and a mentor for each intern.

Students will be required to meet the following eligibility requirements:

  1. The college or university you attend(ed) must be located in Massachusetts. Or, if you attended a college or university outside of Massachusetts, you must be a Massachusetts resident and be able to present proof of residency; and
  2. You must meet one of the following:
  • If you attend(ed) a 4-year college or university, you must have or will complete(d) at least your sophomore year the semester before your internship, or have graduated within the past year. Therefore, your year of graduation must be 2010, 2011, 2012, or 2013; or
  • If you attend(ed) a community college, you must have
    or will complete(d) your Associate’s Degree or Certificate or the equivalent of one year’s course work related to the internship placement in 2010 or 2011; or
  • If you are a graduate student, you must have or will complete(d) your Master's Degree after 2009. PhD students are not eligible.

Would you like to participate?

If you are a prospective intern who meets the above requirements, we urge you to click on the link below and submit your application today:
Internship Application >>

If your company is interested in hosting an intern through this program, please complete the following application form and email it to Ryan H. Mudawar at

Company Registration Form >>

For more information, please read the program’s
Frequently Asked Questions >>

Read the press release >>


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