Military dogtags

MOVE Forward to Your Next Career in the Life Sciences

Maybe you haven’t made the connection, but we have. Your military experience has prepared you for a fulfilling career in the life sciences.

NCBiotech’s Military Outreach & Veterans Engagement (MOVE) workforce development program raises awareness of career opportunities and creates pathways to careers in NC life sciences. The vision for the program is to accelerate the advancement of overall economic equity and resilience for our military and veteran families while developing the workforce for the life sciences industry. Built on our three pillars: of cultivating strong partnerships, achieving employment success, and a disciplined focus on sustainability. The MOVE team seeks to create a national standard for connecting the military community to the thriving workspace due to the abundance of transferrable skills. 

Leadership, adaptability, communication, interpersonal skills, and attention to detail are just a few of the shared values between experienced military talent and life sciences professionals. Regardless of the branch of service or your military specialty, your experience has shaped you for a new career in the life sciences. 

In the life sciences community, we share a common purpose: to serve selflessly for a greater cause. If you are a transitioning service member, honorably discharged veteran, or military spouse, we invite you to join the MOVE program. During your transition, we will assist with putting you in a winning position by providing employment skills training. After completion of the program, you will be connected to employment opportunities throughout the NC life sciences community.  

Explore our portal and begin your pathway to a rewarding career in the life sciences. Complete the interest form to learn more. 

Thank you for your service.

 

Veterans in Biopharma

These stories and quotes from program participants, industry partners, and military members who have entered into the biopharma manufacturing sector highlight the reward that comes with working in the life science industry.


Nathaniel Crump

“As you prepare to transition out of the military and consider your career goals in the civilian sector, step outside of your comfort zone. The soft skills you acquired while in the service, including problem-solving skills and the ability to work under pressure, are greatly valued. Had I stayed in my comfort zone, I wouldn’t have ended up in the pharmaceutical industry working as a Bioprocess Technician IV at Pfizer.

A few months after separating from the service, I did a little research and enrolled in a BioWork course through Central Carolina Community College. The course is only a few weeks long and provided the foundation I needed to pursue a career in Biopharma manufacturing. 

Nathaniel T. Crump, former 13J, Fire Direction Specialist
Bioprocess Technician IV with Pfizer


Connor

During my transition as an infantry sergeant, I knew my lack of hard skills would be an obstacle I would have to breach. Therefore, I reached out to North Carolina Biotechnology Center’s (NCBiotech) Career Skills Program, most commonly known as Military Outreach and Veterans Engagement (M.O.V.E.) program. The NCBiotech M.O.V.E. team was able to sponsor my enrollment into the BioWork course at Central Carolina Community College so that no G.I. Bill funds would be required. BioWork prepared me to apply with confidence for process technician roles, as course participants learn the basic foundational skills to work within a lab, making life saving medications. 

Connor Reardon, Army Veteran 
Bioprocess Technician, Pfizer


Pfizer Manufacturing Day, Sanford NC

My name is Jeremy Schulz, and I am a Bioprocess Technician at Pfizer, as well as a United States Army veteran. During my transition process as a Combat Engineer sergeant, I knew I needed a plan for employment once I got out of the service. I was fearful that the skills I developed over my military career would not translate into the civilian workforce. But, I was wrong. After completing the Soldier for Life Transition Assistance Program (SFLTAP), I connected with NCBiotech CSP, which hosts an On-the-Job Training (OJT) Internship by way of NC life science industry partners.

Jeremy Schulz, Army Veteran
Bioprocess Technician at Pfizer

 


Diane

Army Vet Parlays College, Military Experiences into Her Dream Job … in Biotech

After a seven-year stint in the Army Diane moved to Raeford, N.C. in early 2011. She has walked a winding career path that eventually led her to Johnston Community College and its BioWork certificate program.

Today, Zambrano is a government contracting specialist at global healthcare company Grifols in Research Triangle Park, where she is part of the government pricing team. She credits the JCC staff with putting her on the path to a career in the biopharma industry.

Learn more about Diane's story


Biowork Trainees

Transitioning Military Members into Advanced Manufacturing

Active U.S. Air Force service member Terra Trujillo participated in the Military Service Members in Biopharma Manufacturing BioWork training cohort to learn new skills and prepare for a transition into biopharmaceutical manufacturing.

Terra’s hard work and training paid off when she landed a contractor position at Pfizer in Sanford, NC. She has moved into the Engineering Systems Administrator role and updates and maintains extensive records across training requirements and its platform.

Learn more about Terra's story


MOVE Forward webinar series

This webinar series will connect transitioning service members, veterans and military spouses to industry partners and career resources, such as NCBiotech's Career Center and Company Directory. In addition to these resources, webinar participants will acquire skills in resume writing and interviewing.

To join the webinar, email move@ncbiotech.org.

 

Coming Events

Transferable Skills for Your Next Opportunity

The job of manufacturing essential, life-saving biologics, vaccines and pharmaceuticals is a 24/7 process requiring teamwork, attention to detail, and following approved operating procedures. Does this sound familiar? Your military experience has prepared you for a career in biopharmaceutical manufacturing.

A career in NC life sciences makes sense

North Carolina offers an abundance of employment options. In addition to excellent pay and great benefits, life sciences professionals experience personal and professional growth. Employers in biopharmaceutical manufacturing are interested in your transferable skills: trainability, adaptability, discipline, leadership, integrity, attention to detail, teamwork, and more. 

This career field is a great way to continue your commitment to service with a true purpose. Our work saves lives and delivers a better quality of life at home, as well as across the globe.

Statistics for Biopharma Manufacturing in North Carolina:

  • 108 biopharma manufacturing sites
  • 32,000 employees working at these sites
  • 3,000+ new jobs announced since 2022
  • $93,000 average salary
  • $45,000 - $70,000 entry-level salaries depending on position, education, and experience
     

Training Opportunities Close to Home

The following community colleges offer life science degrees and continued education training, all in close proximity to North Carolina's military bases. Veterans, transitioning service members, Reserves, and military spouses are encouraged to explore available program offerings to support your continued academic interests.

Central Carolina Community College

Central Carolina Community College (CCCC) offers multiple short-term certification curriculums in Chatham, Harnett, and Lee counties, as well as some online formats.

Learn More

Fayetteville Community College (FTCC)

FTCC offers educational programs tailored for current military and veterans. FTCC has a convenient location at the Bragg Training and Education Center (BTEC), ideal for the soldiers and families stationed at Fort Liberty and Pope Airfield, and designed its programs in flexible formats to fit busy schedules.

Learn More

Johnston Community College

The Johnston Community College (JCC) biotechnology department o!ers training that prepares individuals for high tech, well-paying jobs in the biotechnology sector. There are a variety of courses available and an associate's degree curriculum program to meet the growing needs of the industry.

Learn More

Pitt Community College

The Johnston Community College (JCC) biotechnology department o!ers training that prepares individuals for high tech, well-paying jobs in the biotechnology sector. There are a variety of courses available and an associate's degree curriculum program to meet the growing needs of the industry.

Learn More

BioWork Certificate Program

Training Program

BioWork Certificate Program

The BioWork certificate program will equip you with the skills needed to start your next career in life sciences. The 136-hour program prepares participants for a job as a process technician for a biotechnology, pharmaceutical, or chemical manufacturing company.

  • What is covered in BioWork?
    • Biotechnology Industry and Job Overview
    • Current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP)
    • Process Flows, Technology, and Equipment
    • Controlling the Process and Maintaining Quality
    • Fermentation and Cell Growth
    • Job Search, Resumes, and Interviews

13 community colleges across the state offer BioWork. Find a location near you.

NC Pharmaceutical Services Network

Training Program

NC Pharmaceutical Services Network

The North Carolina Pharmaceutical Services Network (PSN) is a one-of-a-kind partnership between industry and academia that provides a continuum of pharmaceutical education and training to new and existing companies in North Carolina and beyond.

PSN at Pitt Community College provides provides a pilot plant type manufacturing environment and lab scale equipment to teach oral solid dosage theory and manufacturing technique.

PSN at East Carolina University is a laboratory-based education and training network. Offerings include GMP/GLP courses, short courses, and analytical services.

NCBiotech's MOVE initiative is an approved Army Career Skills program through the US Army military installation Fort Liberty. MOVE offers three pathways to connect transitioning service members to the industry.

Type I: Job Training

NCBiotech can sponsor you to attend a job certification program known as BioWork, which is provided by the NC Community College network. The BioWork job certification program will teach you the foundational skills you need to begin a career as a process technician for a biotechnology, pharmaceutical, or chemical manufacturing company. 

Process technicians are responsible for the production of chemical and pharmaceutical products. The job training ranges from 8 to 12 weeks at a local community college. Additionally, 100% of your tuition and fees are covered, so there's no need to use your GI Bill or other funding.

Type II: OJT Internship

NCBiotech can connect you with an on-the-job training internship working alongside some of the industry’s top companies such as Pfizer in Sanford and CSL Seqirus in Holly Springs. The OJT internship provides you with real work experience in a biopharma facility. 

The OJT internship is flexible but typically ranges from 8 to 16 weeks, offering internships in Logistics, Process Technicians, Calibration Technician, and more. NCBiotech's OJT internship provides a high probability of employment immediately following your separation from the military.

Type III: Hybrid (Job Training + OJT Internship)

NCBiotech will sponsor you to complete the BioWork course while you participate in an OJT internship. This option is simply a combination of Type I and II.

After successful completion of the Career Skills Program (CSP), NCBiotech will connect you to employers within the industry. 

Complete the interest form to learn more.  

Transitioning Service Members

NCBiotech acknowledges the sacrifice veterans and military spouses have made to protect and serve. Therefore, MOVE extends its services to honorable discharged veterans and military spouses. 

North Carolina features the third largest military presence nationwide. NCBiotech sees this community as a means to bridge a workforce gap but more so as a moral obligation for your commitment to the Nation. 

Why consider this career pathway

North Carolina offers an abundance of life sciences employment opportunities. The life sciences industry offers excellent pay and great benefits, with personal and professional growth potential. Employers in biopharmaceutical manufacturing possess similar work values: trainability, adaptability, discipline, leadership, integrity, attention to detail, teamwork, and more. Our work saves lives and delivers a better quality of life at home and across the globe.

 Statistics* for biopharma manufacturing in North Carolina:

  • 108 biopharma manufacturing sites
  • 32,000 employees working at these sites
  • 3,000+ new jobs announced since 2022
  • $93,000 average salary
  • $45,000 - $70,000 entry-level salaries depending on position, education, and experience

 

How do I MOVE into the industry?

NCBiotech will sponsor you to attend BioWork, a job certification program provided through the NC Community College network. The BioWork job certification program will teach you the foundational skills you need to begin a career as a process technician for a biotechnology, pharmaceutical, or chemical manufacturing company. 

Process technicians are responsible for the production of chemical and pharmaceutical products. Additionally, 100% of your tuition and fees are covered by federal funding, so there's no need to use the GI Bill or other financing.

Process Technicians:

  • Operate, monitor, and control the production process
  • Receive, transport, and store materials
  • Collect and analyze materials used in production
  • Inspect and maintain the production equipment and control systems
  • Keep critical records on the process and product
  • Maintain company safety, health, and environmental standards

After you complete BioWork, NCBiotech will connect you to employers within the industry.   

Complete the interest form to learn more. 

BIO Jobs Hub

The Bio Jobs Hub is a resource for those interested in learning about a career in the life sciences.

In addition to learning about transferable skills, you can explore job descriptions and salary ranges, find local training, and hear first-hand successes from those in the industry.

Jacob Key

Jacob Key
Program Manager, Military Outreach Veterans Engagement
Jacob_Key@ncbiotech.org

Hee-Sook

Hee-Sook Song, Ph.D.
Workforce Development Director
hee-sook_song@ncbiotech.org

Photo credits:

Header photo by Department of Defense/Staff Sgt. Curtis J. Lenz
North Carolina State University Biotechnology Training and Education Center
iStock

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