Launch 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 biopharmaceutical manufacturing.
Military Veterans and the life science community share a common drive: a compassion to serve.
Discipline, integrity, leadership, adaptability and attention to detail are shared values between experienced military personnel and life science professionals. Whether you are a former Airman, Soldier, Marine, Sailor or Coast Guardsman, your experience can land you a new career in the life sciences.
Thank you for your service.
Visit the NCBiotech COVID-19 Resource page for list of resources and event updates.
- Veteran Spotlight
- Upcoming Events
- Transferrable Military Skills
- Training Programs
- Browse Open Positions
“To my fellow service members, as you are considering your civilian career goals, my advice to you is look beyond your comfort zone. Keep an open mind and be willing to step outside of what feels comfortable. The soft skills learned in the Military; strict adherence to following procedures, drive to achieve results, and problem-solving skills are highly valued. My MOS or Military Occupational Code was Public Affairs Mass Communication Specialist. If I had stayed in my comfort zone, I would have shied away from the opportunity to accept a Military Intern Bioprocess Technician role made available to me through the NCBiotech Veterans Outreach Program.
Don’t underestimate your skills. I found through my internship and BioWork training that Biopharma manufacturing is where I want to be in my civilian career. I stepped outside of my comfort zone and would not have changed a thing. To my fellow service members and military spouses, I also recommend you consider completing the BioWork Certification Program offered at some of the Community Colleges. For me, I completed the program at Central Carolina Community College and had a blast! It’s a program designed for the adult learner, industry specific, and the program instructor was great. For me, completing the BioWork certification program while on my Military Internship was instrumental as all the work I was performing and why I was doing it became crystal clear. I had such a great experience I’ve volunteered to support an upcoming video project.
In closing, I’ll leave my fellow service members, veterans, and military spouses with this: I once had a Sergeant Major who would often say “every day is a selection”. He meant every day you must prove you belong here. I have found those words were true. If continuing to serve others in your civilian career is important to you, the biopharma manufacturing industry allows you to continue to serve others while using all the skill assets you developed while serving our great country. Take the initiative to explore military internships in biopharma manufacturing or take the BioWork Certification class. Think outside your comfort zone and give it a go! I did and now I’m fully engaged in my civilian career working as a full-time Bioprocess Technician with Pfizer.”
John Nicolas, Army Veteran, Former Military Intern, Bioprocess Technician with Pfizer-Sanford, NC
BioWork Blitz Learning Workshops
New workshop coming soon! The next BioWork Blitz Workshop will be held on May 6th, offering two sessions on that day. Stay tuned for more details!
Want to learn more about careers in biopharma manufacturing? Sign up and attend our free BioWork Blitz Workshop. There are typically two sessions to choose from. Each hands-on learning workshop provides you a unique opportunity to learn more about the biopharma manufacturing industry in a fun and hands-on adult learning environment.
The BioWork Blitz Workshop will be held at Fort Bragg and is open to Active Service Members in Transition, Veterans, and Military Spouses. Don’t miss your opportunity to explore this rewarding industry. It may be the learning experience you’ve been waiting for to make biopharmaceutical manufacturing your next adventure.
The BioWork Blitz workshops were designed to support our goal to build greater awareness and pathways to rewarding careers in the life sciences.
Attendees learn about:
- PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)
- Gowning procedures
- SOP (standard operating procedure) writing
- Upstream and downstream biopharma manufacturing
- Biopharma industry growth and careers.
To date, we have proudly welcomed forty participants and have delivered several interactive learning sections.
Skills and Experience Built for Your Next Opportunity
As you close your military chapter and explore your next path, we hope you'll stay in North Carolina and consider a life science career. Careers in the life sciences offer excellent pay and benefits, personal and professional growth potential, and a great way to continue your commitment to service with a purpose. These careers save lives and deliver a better quality of life at home, and across the globe.
Your military experience and training have prepared you for roles in these business categories. As you explore your next career move, take a look at the following sampling of positions found in many North Carolina biopharma manufacturing companies.
- Manufacturing technicians
- Product schedulers
- Sampling technicians
- Production leads and supervisor roles
Distribution and packaging operations
Engineering and facilities operations
- Maintenance Technicians
- Utilities / HVAC / Process
- Water / Waste / Wifi Systems
- Instrumentation and Calibration
- Environmental Health and Safety
Supply chain logistics
- Production and Materials Planning
- Vendor Management / Buyers
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.
Community College Training Programs
Central Carolina Community College (CCCC) offers multiple short-term certification curriculums in Chatham, Harnett and Lee counties, as well as some online formats.
The Johnston Community College (JCC) biotechnology department offers 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.
The Pitt Community College biotechnology curriculum has been developed to meet the increasing demand for skilled workers in the biological and chemical technology fields. The course work emphasizes training for positions such as research assistants, laboratory technicians and quality control technicians.
Fayetteville Technical Community College (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 Bragg and Pope Airfield, and designed its programs in flexible formats to fit busy schedules.
Biopharma Manufacturing Training Programs
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.
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.
The PSN program at East Carolina University (PSN@ECU) provides laboratory-based education and the PSN program at Pitt Community College (PSN@PCC) teaches oral solid dosage theory and manufacturing techniques in a real-world environment.
Below are just a few of the industry partners working with the North Carolina university and community college systems to develop robust training programs throughout the state. Click their logo to browse open positions and find out more about their opportunities for veterans.
To my fellow Veterans, do not look at your job title as your only selling point. Take advantage of learning programs, internships, education programs, and find mentors. Do not limit yourself! I attribute my accomplishments to the soft skills the Military taught me in perseverance, problem-solving and adaptability and my excellent mentors.
LATOYA MCDUFFIE, ARMY VETERAN, MANUFACTURING SUPERVISOR, SEQIRUS
Success Stories & Community Activity
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.
Fort Bragg’s Soldier for Life Transition Assistant Program (SFL-TAP) team tours Pfizer-Sanford, NC
In support of the NCBiotech Veterans Outreach Program, Pfizer hosted an experiential site tour for Fort Bragg’s SFL-TAP team. Attendees were welcomed with an overview of the site’s history and an expansive tour explaining biopharma manufacturing processes.
We’ve made the connection: military service members are a great fit for making medicines! Throughout their career, service members develop transferable skills that fit nicely in biopharma manufacturing roles. Creating opportunities for our military transition assistant program teams to experience industry operating environments and its culture is an important part of building a robust Veterans Outreach program.
Attendees are pictured left to right: Salmon Ponaport, US Army TAP Team, Raymond Godsave, NC Works, Jerves Shipman, US Army TAP Team, Charles Mitchell, Associate Director of Pfizer Manufacturing, William McMillian, US Army TAP Manager, Elizabeth Ellis, NCBiotech’s Veterans Outreach Program Consultant, and Bill Bullock, NCBiotech’s SVP Economic Development and Statewide Operations
Pfizer saw the value of my military training and experience and understood how the skills I had gained through my years of training and military experience would transfer in to their operation.
Craig Hardy, Navy Veteran, Senior Maintenance Manager, Pfizer
Believe in yourself and bring forth the mindset that you possessed in the military, such as “adapt and overcome.” The ability to help others by transforming or improving the quality of life for patients and families is the biggest reward one could ask for.
Marine Veteran Charles Marsh, manufacturing specialist, AveXis
For more information or questions about the Veterans Outreach Program, contact:
Veterans Outreach Program Consultant, NCBiotech
Header photo by Department of Defense/Staff Sgt. Curtis J. Lenz
North Carolina State University Biotechnology Training and Education Center