Biotech Leaders Academy: Growing diverse entrepreneurs in biotech via hands-on work and mentorship

submission by LABioHub

About Your Application

Organization(s) name(s):

Los Angeles Bioscience Hub

Organization(s) website(s):

Organization(s) twitter handle(s):

Organization(s) facebook handle(s):


Organization(s) instagram handle(s):


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Describe Your Organization(s)

Non-profit organization

For-profit organization


Other (please specify below):

In one sentence, please describe what your organization does.


LA Bioscience Hub (LABH) facilitates the creation of a thriving bioscience cluster that fosters innovation, nurtures local talent, and creates good-paying jobs in East LA’s LA Bioscience Corridor.

In one to three sentences, please describe your proposal.


LA Bioscience Hub, in collaboration with East Los Angeles College (ELAC), will create the Biotech Leaders Academy - a new program that introduces East LA’s bioscience students to the possibilities of becoming a biotech entrepreneur. We will place students into summer internships with LA biotech companies to give them valuable hands-on work experience. Students will also attend an entrepreneurship academy that introduces them to the opportunities and pathways of creating a biotech startup.

Please write a sample tweet to describe your submission.


.@LABioscienceHub grows diverse #entrepreneurs in #biotech via Biotech Leaders Academy #startup @EastLACollege

Where will you be working? Please be specific (e.g. Third Street Middle School; Boyle Heights; LA County).

Central LA

East LA

San Gabriel Valley

San Fernando Valey

South LA


South Bay

Antelope Valley

County of Los Angeles (countywide)

City of Los Angeles (citywide)


Other (please specify below):

How do you plan to use these resources to make change? (check all that apply)

Conduct research

Engage residents and stakeholders

Implement a pilot or new project

Expand a pilot or program

Mobilize for systems change

Advocate with policymakers and leaders

Implement and track policy

Other (please specify below):

How will your proposal improve the following “Create” metrics? (check all that apply)

Employment in the creative industries

Arts establishments per capita

Concentration of manufacturing activity in LA

Federal research grant funding

Patents per capita

Jobs per capita

Minority- and women-owned firms

Gini coefficient

Number of high growth startups

Venture capital investment

Measures of cultural and global economic influence (“soft power”) (Dream Metric)

Recruiting and retention rates for local higher education institutions (Dream Metric)

Percentage of graduates from local higher education institutions that remain in LA County 5 years after graduating (Dream Metric)

Unemployment rates (and opportunities) for the formerly incarcerated (Dream Metric)

Describe in greater detail how you will make LA the best place to create.


LA Bioscience Hub (LABH) will help make LA the best place to create by fostering the next generation of diverse biotech entrepreneurs in our region.

Biotech is an industry of the future. It steadily expanded in LA County during the recession and continues to outpace many sectors in job growth today. Careers in the bioscience industry tend to pay family-supporting wages, providing an opportunity for low-income communities of color to enter the middle class. Given the sector’s strength in our region, LABH wants to ensure that this industry reflects the diversity and dynamism of Los Angeles. To help achieve this vision and make LA the best place to create, we are launching the Biotech Leaders Academy.

The Biotech Leaders Academy has two key components: (1) an entrepreneurship academy and (2) providing students with paid internships at local biotech firms.

The entrepreneurship academy will expose students from diverse backgrounds to the spectrum of career pathways available to them after they’ve completed their education. Our academy will equip students with the tools they’ll need to begin a career in biotechnology and empower them to pursue entrepreneurial opportunities. Through the Biotech Leaders Academy, we will cultivate our region’s next generation of local bioscience company founders, CEOs, COOs, and CTOs. We’ll foster entrepreneurship through learning modules that cover a variety of topics, including tech transfer, moving research from the lab to commercialization, securing capital, and building a team for success. Students will meet local entrepreneurs and get connected to local resources to ensure their success here in LA.

The second component of the Biotech Leaders Academy is our summer internship placement program. LABH will connect students to paid industry internships that provide hands-on work experience in this competitive field. The internship component will be modeled after work study programs, with LABH and participating biotech companies funding student internships jointly. This will ensure meaningful industry engagement and enable a broad spectrum of firms – from first stage startups to major industry leaders – to participate.

The Biotech Leaders Academy will nurture and expand our region’s entrepreneurial and innovation economy. By creating opportunities for populations that are underrepresented in the biotech industry, we will develop a more inclusive local economy and we will help make LA the best place to create.

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.


Biotech Leaders Academy aims to 1) introduce students to biotech entrepreneurship and inspire them to start their own companies; 2) create meaningful, long-term partnerships between academic institutions and local biotech companies.

To measure our success based on the following:
- Number of students participating in the program and number of student applicants
- Students’ comfort with the basics skills and areas of entrepreneurship
- Employer satisfaction with program
- Percent of employers that are interested in providing internships for future cohorts
- Percent of internship positions that are extended into the school year
- Percent of interns that are invited for additional opportunities with their summer employer
- Number of students who go on to pursue entrepreneurial endeavors

We will the program's survey students, employers, and instructors before, during, and after the program. In addition, we will gather feedback through group and one-on-one discussions.

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed? (check all that apply)

Money (financial capital)

Volunteers/staff (human capital)

Publicity/awareness (social capital)

Infrastructure (building/space/vehicles, etc.)


Technical infrastructure (computers, etc.)

Community outreach

Network/relationship support

Quality improvement research

Other (please specify below):

12 Pink talk bubble tail c96b4a07ef1417e25d0bcf5c4cba4766b8bbf0382f07677990a9d5577885d4d7

Wonderful project proposal! Providing work experience to students adds tremendous value to students’ education and the community. I hope LABH wins it will definitely make “LA the Best Place to Create!”

by amanda1990
5 months ago

Great project!

by romanasc
6 months ago

I love this idea! Students participating in MESA are already going above and beyond their regular college classes, so these internship opportunities would go to students who have proven their dedication and determination in STEM. Good luck LABH!

by cathyromanas
6 months ago

Great project!!

by anna.olivier123
6 months ago

This is a great project idea! This would encourage more students of all backgrounds to go into STEM, as well as help grow our innovative and creative talent here in East LA. This provides an amazing opportunity for students to connect with people in the industry for the hands-on experience they need to guide their future in biotech. Hope this project wins!

by winniferfong
6 months ago

I hope this project wins! There's so much talent in all of LA's corners! This program will really help us unlock more of the region's entrepreneurial spirit and passion for innovation. Plus, the internship match component will help strengthen LA's existing bioscience companies by helping them access talent, and ultimately expand to create more good-paying, local jobs. Let's make sure we nurture and support our region's bioscience industry so that it can continue to grow and create a multitude of benefits for Angelenos.

by dpatel
6 months ago

This is a fantastic idea. We need more programs that connect students to industry professionals and PAID internships in the field. This program will introduce East LA College students to the nuts and bolts of the industry – from developing a product, to starting a company and everything in between. Bioscience is a growing industry in Los Angeles, and we need to nurture our home grown talent to meet the demand!

by cguzman
6 months ago

Investing in high-growth industries like bioscience is an important step in nurturing a healthy, thriving economy for Los Angeles residents - particularly for students graduating from our local colleges. This program will have a MAJOR impact on our local economy, and on the lives of ELAC students that LABH will be able to touch with this program!

by jennyelp
6 months ago

We need to match demand for talent with the creative, diverse minds of our City's youth. The Academy will go a long way to fill that gap. What better story than to read that the latest breakthrough or product in biotechnology was created by an Angelino in Los Angeles! Go LA BioHub!

by alfredfraijo
6 months ago

This is a great idea. LA loses many skilled students and workers in the science fields as they move to other markets. Yet there is growing demand for this kind of labor force here in LA and we need more jobs in this sector that pay well and offer economic mobility. By creating a direct match to employers, we can grow the local economy and the economic opportunities of local residents.

by tjdesimone
6 months ago

Paid summer internships for students is an essential resume builder for students, and the classes on creating a start-up is a wonderful idea. This really is a multi-benefit project that LA needs to have for its future - I hope it wins!

by bobby.p
6 months ago

This would be a great program! The sooner students learn about new/alternative/other career options, the better. Plus, low-income students and students of color need to know that they too can create successful start-ups, and there are people and resources right here in LA that are ready to help.

by tp89
6 months ago

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Award topvotedidea 5a5ae14e3d56a10363ea2a398cece46cf4df891213cbe68677c19d8903a1932a
Circle 1 inactive e7784182a1bd5eace578987db27fc19ec6337f418c48c6c8732605b9043d50d0 Step1 title submission inactive cde083e53089b973e7c9dc80a44a038c1ce4cf3b2650aeb5549157d1ed58a2d9

Submission Began
Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Submission Ended
Tuesday, October 06, 2015
at 07:00 PM UTC

Circle 2 inactive 74a43088831beb43fdbd7591ef5d50a5a7a26ff92c9e8ed489782459fa31a8d9 Step2 title voting inactive 96be722f53c417edddb5742ba9a6dc2fd403f7e4f6c19dbe883d50d20d93689d

Voting Began
Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Voting Ended
Tuesday, November 03, 2015
at 08:00 PM UTC

Circle 3 83da7a9432aeea960e1a9e9ee93e7ea1221af6c8f42b27964f2e9999d94b2b8d Step3 title 3d9e2a65d6ea1ad301f8fc607f5f828bd96362932c71d81c0da5b1fd964422b0

Winner Announced
Tuesday, December 08, 2015