Federal and county officials announced Monday that $1 million in federal Community Project Funding has been secured for bioscience program development at the Maricopa Community Colleges.
In April, the Maricopa County Community College District submitted a proposal for the funding to Rep. Greg Stanton, who represents Arizona’s 9th District in Congress.
“As a result of Arizona's rapidly growing bioscience sector, the Maricopa Community Colleges have taken critical steps in investments and resources needed to support the expansion of current workforce development opportunities for our student population,” Marie Sullivan, MCCCD governing board president, stated in a release.
"This program is unique because not only do we train the traditional laboratory technician, but we provide the bioscience employers with the niche skill sets necessary to operate and elevate their bioscience businesses."
Stanton said schools “like Maricopa Community Colleges give our students the tools that could help them find the next scientific breakthrough or discover lifesaving cures, and they attract companies who are looking for a highly skilled and developed workforce.
“These companies bring jobs to the Valley, bolster our economy and help keep our graduates here at home.” Stanton said. “That’s why I’m proud to partner with MCCCD to help to expand and develop its STEM program, equipping our best and brightest with the skills they need to thrive.”
The funding announcement was made at the Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation LabForce in Phoenix.
In addition to traditional laboratory technician training and “upskilling programs,” CEI LabForce provides incubation space for bioscience entrepreneurs across Maricopa County, the release stated.
“As part of the Maricopa Community Colleges, CEI LabForce helps bioscience innovators and businesses of all sizes succeed by producing entrepreneurial, educational, and workforce development resources” Dr. Steven R. Gonzales, interim chancellor of the Maricopa Community Colleges, stated.
“While the construction of the space concludes, the development of high-quality educational content and curriculum is the current venture, and the Community Project Funding secured by Congressman Stanton will support this important work.”