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Experiential Education

A female scientist works at a hood.
The Professional Science Master’s (PSM) program capitalizes on Northeastern’s location among the many biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies in Boston, Seattle, and the Bay Area and its strength in providing real-world learning in the corporate sector for more than 100 years.

How It Works

The graduate co-op is the real-world component of the Biotechnology Professional Master of Science (PSM) Program. We are fortunate to have a rich practice environment in the Northeastern network, which includes Boston, Seattle, and the Bay Area. Based upon our survey of local companies, we anticipate a variety of internship opportunities in all life science disciplines as well as non-science opportunities such as project management.

Students are responsible for working with the graduate co-op coordinator to obtain a co-op. They will receive the support and guidance of the graduate co-op coordinator throughout the search process and throughout the co-op experience. Each student, including international students, will complete a co-op that provides him/her with an invaluable opportunity to gain professional training and real-world experience in the commercial sector. In most instances, the co-op will be paid; however, a paid co-op is not guaranteed. In some instances, the co-op will serve as a mutually beneficial preliminary period of employment leading to a permanent position.

Typically, the co-op will be three to six months in length, depending on the requirements of the employment site. The co-op usually occurs in the second year of the program. Students in the Biotechnology PSM Program have the option of performing a 4-month internship (called a pre-co-op) in advance of the co-op.

Read an interview with Biotechnology Co-op Coordinator Vanecia Harrison-Sanders here.

Co-Op Options

Students in the Biotechnology PSM Program can complete their co-op requirement in two ways:

  • 3 – 6 month industry full-time work experience: With the assistance of the graduate co-op coordinator, students will apply for positions within Northeastern’s industry network and complete an immersive full-time work experience in Boston or another location. Students should contact the graduate co-op coordinator to find out about available positions.
  • Industry-based independent project: Students who are currently working in the biotechnology sector (or related field) will complete an independent project, vetted by the graduate co-op coordinator, the biotechnology program academic director, and the employer, that is outside of the scope of normal work duties and relevant to the degree program