Biotech Career Development Program

Program Description

The Biotech Career Development Program (BCDP), formerly the Biotech Career Exploration Program, is a structured program to educate, train, and provide career exposure to many aspects of biotechnology outside of the traditional academic tenure-track faculty position.

There will be two sessions per month (each one hour in length, generally). One of the monthly sessions will be a panel discussion focused on different career sectors. The other session will be focused on skill building. All of the sessions will run Thursday or Friday mornings, from 9:00am – 10:00am (approximately) at Taubman Library or another nearby location.

We are accepting applications from graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and early-career scientists from life science programs.

Throughout the program, trainees will engage in a series of workshops, seminars, and panel discussions to explore career options and prepare for an experiential learning opportunity with an on-campus unit, small business startup, large corporation, non-profit organization, governmental agency, law firm, or any additional non-academic entity.  

Program Participants:

  • Graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and early-career scientists

Participant Objectives:

  • Identify and explore non-academic career options based on your interest
  • Develop desirable employment skills based on specific competencies

Program Objectives:

  • Provide a structured and collaborative skill development and experiential learning placement program for graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and early-career scientists from life science programs
  • Offer non-academic employers access to trained students, fellows, and early-career scientists and serve as a single point of contact for workforce recruitment and development in the life sciences.


Learn how the Biotech Career Development Program provided Jackee Sanchez, Ph.D., a graduate of the U-M pharmacology program, with professional skills training and guided career exploration beyond the traditional academic tenure-track faculty route.

“I got an idea of the top three or four careers that I wanted to explore further by hearing from other professionals through the program,” said Sanchez. “I then forged connections with people in those positions and it led to the next steps in my career, landing me where I am today at AstraZeneca.” READ FULL ARTICLE.

Alumni Experiences

74 Alumni Participants

  • 11 are active in miLEAD Consulting/Michigan Graduate Consulting Club
  • 6 are active in the Wolverine Venture Fund/Zell Lurie Commercialization Fund
  • 4 secured fellowships/internships
  • 11 landed jobs

Job Titles of Past Participants

  • Clinical Data Analyst (industry)
  • Research Specialist (academic)
  • Research Scientist (industry)
  • 2 Engineers (industry)
  • Sales Associate (industry)
  • Technical Specialist (law firm)
  • Senior Program Manager (foundation)
  • Clinical Marketing Specialist (industry)

“Assignments created accountability and certainly helped my progress, the structured access to relevant information is hard to find elsewhere.”

“The program provided me with goals and deadlines for my career development.”


The Biotech Career Development Program is provided by FFMI, MICHR, and the UMMS Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. For questions, please contact Jon Servoss at


Fast Forward Medical Innovation                                                                   

May 23, 2022