News Brief

BHCC Receives Life Science Workforce Initiative Grant from City of Boston

Thursday, February 15, 2024

College partnering with Mass General Brigham and Project HOPE to train Medical Lab Professionals  

Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC) received a Life Science Workforce Initiative grant, the City of Boston announced on Thursday, February 15. The more than $1.2 million grant is one of several totaling $4.7 million to train and place Boston residents into life sciences careers. 

“Boston is the home for big ideas that can change the world,” said Boston Mayor Michelle Wu. “As Mayor, my goal is to lengthen Boston’s lead as the best place in the world to start and grow a life sciences company—to create life-saving innovations and great jobs for our residents. Through our Life Sciences Workforce Initiative, we’re partnering with industry, training providers, and higher education to connect employers with the talented workforce that lives in our neighborhoods.” 

BHCC was awarded the grant in partnership with Mass General Brigham (MGB) and Project HOPE. Together, they will train Boston residents for entry-level medical laboratory jobs such as phlebotomist, lab assistant, and lab technician. These jobs are both high-demand roles and do not require a four-year degree.  

“Bunker Hill Community College has a long history of partnering with MGB, training everything from nurses to medical imaging professionals,” said BHCC President Pam Eddinger. “This time, we are training laboratory scientists, and the need for these trained technicians is increasing dramatically. They will complete every step in the pathway to a job, and many will go on to an advanced degree. This is an entry point—to a career, to higher education—and there is no wrong door.” 

Boston’s Life Science Workforce Initiative aims to leverage Greater Boston’s position as the global leader in life sciences to develop more inclusive training and career pathways for Boston residents, particularly workers of color and those without four-year degrees, with a goal of hiring 1,000 Boston residents into the sector by the end of 2025. 

“We are excited to build on our long experience collaborating with Mass General Brigham to expand the workforce pipeline into fields connecting life sciences and healthcare,” said BHCC STEM Dean Laura Rubin, who also attended the announcement. “This grant will give Boston residents the opportunity to train as part of BHCC's Medical Laboratory Science Pathway for entry-level jobs in high-demand fields, offering family-sustaining wages and career growth. Jobs in areas like phlebotomy, medical laboratory assistant, and technician roles are the foundation of our region's laboratory sciences economy, and a skilled, inclusive workforce is critical to equity and shared prosperity.” 

The students in this program will be a part of BHCC’s STEM pathway and Medical Laboratory Science programs. Already, those programs place students in labs and other scientific settings across the region to work in sustaining-wage, high-demand jobs.  

Watch Mayor Wu and BHCC President Pam Eddinger speak at the February 15 Life Science Workforce Initiative announcement.