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Durham Tech teams with Biotech Firms for Apprenticeship Programs Press "Enter" to skip to content

Durham Tech teams with Biotech Firms for Apprenticeship Programs

A local business has partnered with Durham Technical Community College to help people gain the skills they need to work in the biotechnology industry. With its three-year apprenticeship programme, KBI Biopharma aims to build a pathway from school to life sciences jobs.

KBI President and CEO, Dirk Lange, said, “This is going to be a key initiative and, really, a cornerstone of our strategy to drive a sustainable workforce for our sector. There is more demand than supply in terms of talent right now. There is a lot of competition for talent.”

The apprenticeship programme consists of 6,000 hours of on-the-job training and 1,000 hours of classroom work, with an associate degree in applied science as the end result. KBI not only pays for all of the courses at Durham Tech, but it also pays its apprentices a wage ranging from $35,000 to $45,000 per year, plus benefits.

Noting the start of biotech career, Lange said that it is near and dear to his heart. He has assured that he will personally lead the program and deliver the promises they are making. The life science sector of the Triangle is exploding. They are in search of excellent talent and Durham wants to be the provider of the same.

They hope that their collaboration with KBI can serve as a blueprint for how businesses, community colleges, and communities will collaborate to ensure diverse talent pools in the community. Lange said the programme is aimed at high school graduates and veterans, with plans to hire four apprentices in July and grow to ten to twenty the following year.

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