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University of Massachusetts and Genzyme Launch Genzyme/UMass Scholars Program

Innovative Internship and Scholarship Program Will Help
Fill Life Sciences Job Pipeline

Left to right, David Fleming of Genzyme; Pat Plummer, Massachusetts chancellor of higher education; Jack M. Wilson, president of UMass, Governor Deval Patrick, Joan Wood of Genzyme and Zoltan Csimma of Genzyme at the Life Sciences Summitat UMass Boston on Feb. 1, 2008. Photo by Harry Brett.


BOSTON-The University of Massachusetts and the Massachusetts-based, leading biotechnology company Genzyme Corporation today announced an innovative new scholarship and internship program for University of Massachusetts students called the "Genzyme/UMass Scholars Program."  The announcement was made at the Life Sciences Talent Summit at UMass Boston.

The program will give a select group of UMass undergraduate students from across the University's four undergraduate campuses the opportunity to participate in a hands-on summer internship program at Genzyme. Upon successful completion of their internship placement, the UMass/Genzyme Scholars will receive a grant of $5,000 each toward their senior year tuition and fees. As students enter their senior year, Genzyme's University Relations department has made a commitment to assist each student in potential opportunities for job placement at Genzyme.

"It is critical for Genzyme and for others in the life sciences industry to strengthen our connection with UMass and with the other local academic institutions that have helped to create a world-class culture of innovation in this region," said Henri A. Termeer, chairman and chief executive officer of Genzyme Corp.  "We are very excited to partner with UMass on this program that will support students eager to pursue careers in biotechnology and which will help us identify talented young people who may one day make important contributions to our company and the patients we serve."

The internship and scholarship program will strengthen the partnership between Genzyme and the University of Massachusetts and connect students with valuable internship experiences at Genzyme which could lead to career opportunities at Genzyme and other Massachusetts life sciences companies after graduation.

"I want to thank Genzyme for its strong commitment to University of Massachusetts students.  This is yet another example of the benefits of private-public partnerships-it provides great opportunities for our students, opportunities that can help them begin careers in the growing field of biotechnology and it also supports Genzyme's ability to train and recruit skilled workers in Massachusetts," said UMass President Jack M. Wilson."

Starting in summer 2008, after an open but competitive selection process, up to 10 highly qualified UMass undergraduate students will spend the summer as paid interns at Genzyme following their junior year. The students will take on specific work assignments reporting to Genzyme managers and will also participate in structured learning opportunities focusing on leadership and career development. The internship experience will be designed to enable them to develop a personal perspective on how Genzyme's biotechnology products are developed and brought to market.  They will also see how these products are helping to improve the quality of life for healthcare patients around the world. Genzyme currently offers more than 150 internships and cooperative opportunities across all areas of the company.

"The Board of Higher Education (BHE) is pleased to support the Genzyme/UMass Scholars Program," said Dr. Patricia Plummer, Chancellor of the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education.  "A STEM Scholar Intern Matching Fund has been established through the BHE to match private scholarships with scholarships and, even more importantly, internships to attract and retain students in these difficult fields.  This collaboration between Genzyme, the University of Massachusetts and the BHE could be a model for other corporate leaders wishing to assure that Massachusetts has the life sciences and overall STEM workforce to maintain its leadership position in these fields."

The University of Massachusetts is the Commonwealth's public research university, educating more than 60,000 students each year at its campuses in Amherst, Boston, Dartmouth, Lowell and Worcester. UMass accounts for 18 percent of all bachelors degrees in the life sciences awarded in Massachusetts annually-more than any other academic institution in the state.

Genzyme contact:  Sarah Millerick

UMass contacts:     Robert P. Connolly

                            Libby DeVecchi


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