FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Thursday, May 13, 2021
(Portland, Ore.) – The industry is hiring as fast as it can.
The bioscience industry provides direct and indirect employment of 47,000 jobs in Oregon, showing substantial growth in the past decade. With large company expansions such as Genentech’s Hillsboro Individualized Therapies, Micro Systems Engineering’s upcoming Lake Oswego-area advanced automated manufacturing expansion and the arrival of Twist Bioscience’s ‘Factory of the Future’ soon breaking ground in Wilsonville, a surge of open jobs has bio innovation and manufacturing companies in need of skilled workers soon.
The Oregon Bioscience Association has assembled large, small and medium firms as part of the upcoming virtual career match event on May 20. Companies including Acer Therapeutics, Acumed, Biotronik, CAI, Cascade Chemistry, Genentech, Genteel, Micro Systems Engineering, Inc., Molecular Testing Laboratories, Refeyn, Thermo Fisher Scientific and Twist Bioscience will look to meet with applicants to fill a range of highly skilled, mid-level and entry positions. “There are hundreds of bio-related jobs available throughout the Pacific Northwest region right now,” said Oregon Bio’s Executive Director Liisa Bozinovic.
The most recent economic impact study shows industry employment increased by 76 percent in the past two decades, and that current bio positions in Oregon pay 40 percent above the state’s average private wage. Several jobs are now posted at https://www.oregonbio.org/careercatalyst/, and job search sites such as Indeed are currently boasting more than 500 jobs in Oregon in biotech, bioscience, science and research.
Noted Terry Smith, regional human resource executive, “The industry is hiring as fast as it can. Every bio company in Oregon that I know of is hiring, in some cases faster than even the highest-flying tech start-ups. Despite what some might say, Oregon is quickly evolving the synergies it needs to finally become the hub we have been building toward for years.”
The Oregon Employment Department projects more than 430,000 job openings in STEM – science, technology, engineering and math – fields in Oregon between 2017 and 2027, showing a growth rate of 15 percent, according to Oregon’s STEM Investment Council Legislative Report in 2019.
“Oregon Bio partners with universities and community colleges in the region to ensure graduates are industry ready,” said Bozinovic.
Josefine Fleetwood, the Employer Relations Manager at Oregon State University’s College of Engineering, noted, “The biotech sector is growing rapidly and is providing tremendous opportunities for Oregon State University engineering graduates. As the 10th largest college of engineering in the nation, OSU awarded a combined 2,000 undergraduate and graduate degrees in 2020 from five schools of engineering. Our graduates are highly valued, in demand and uniquely prepared to fill the talent pipeline of these technical positions in this exciting industry.”
“Given the growth in the bio-tech tech industry, it’s critical for our public universities to prepare students who have a passion in STEM classes for their next steps,” said Patrick Phillips, provost and senior vice president at the University of Oregon. “With our Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact helping to provide a variety of opportunities in this industry, UO students – at both the undergraduate and graduate levels – are ready to join tomorrow’s workforce and make a difference in changing the world.”
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About Oregon Bio
The Oregon Bioscience Association seeks to create opportunity through advocacy, cultivation, education and group purchasing discounts for its members and the sector. Oregon Bio promotes the growth and quality of the bioscience industry in the region and continually seeks ways to support sustainability, acceleration and growth in the life science, bioscience, biotechnology and device manufacturing industries. Oregon Bio, a nonprofit membership association is a member of the Council of State Bioscience Associations and affiliates with the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO), Advanced Medical Technology Association and Medical Device Manufacturers Association.
The region’s most current bioscience economic impact study showed Oregon’s growing bio footprint reached $10.7 billion, creating 47,238 jobs for $1.5 billion in wages across 820 business establishments. Between 2002-2017, total bioscience employment in Oregon jumped 72 percent among the five industry subsectors. Health-related R&D at Oregon hospitals and universities generated $669 million in economic activity in 2017. In 2015, federal research funding to Oregon institutions totaled more than $363 million. Venture capital investments in Oregon’s bioscience-related companies have increased in recent years and between 2014 to 2017, totaled $76.5 million.
Also growing is Oregon’s share of NIH funding. The Teconomy/BIO state survey shows Oregon is home to 1,133 bio firms garnering $262 million in venture capital investments between 2016-’19, and that Oregon continues its steady increase in attracting funding from the National Institutes of Health at $399 million in 2019.