Durham Tech and Wake Tech partner to launch RTP Bio, a biotechnology training and talent collaboration



Durham Technical Community College and Wake Technical Community College announced the launch of RTP Bio, a new workforce development collaboration that unites biotechnology, biomanufacturing, and biopharmaceutical talent pipelines of the two community colleges in the Research Triangle Park region.

Durham Tech and Wake Tech serve the fifth largest biotechnology hub in the United States, with Research Triangle Park located in both college’s service regions. The location and expansion of life science and biopharma industries have significantly accelerated employment demands. In 2020, more than 11,000 biotechnology jobs were created in the Research Triangle.

Current offerings at Wake Tech include degrees in Biopharmaceutical Technology and Biotechnology and continuing education through the BioWork credential. Durham Tech offers degrees in Clinical Trials Research, Biomedical Equipment Technology and continuing education through the BioWork credential. Durham Tech also plans to add new degrees in biotechnology-related programs in the coming year.  

On Thursday, college leadership from each institution spoke on the essential need of the initiative – both for residents who can access great careers and the opportunity for employers to connect with diverse, talented residents in the region.

“RTP Bio will be our mechanism to foster a collective commitment to life science companies in the Research Triangle Park and Durham, Orange, and Wake Counties,” said Durham Tech President J.B. Buxton. “This initiative enhances biotechnology career opportunities for students and graduates of both Durham Tech and Wake Tech.”

The goal of the RTP Bio collaboration is to support a seamless face for regional biotech employers in addressing their employment demands and foster greater collective impact. Durham Tech and Wake Tech have committed to develop joint efforts in areas such as 1+1 associate degree transfer arrangements; delivery of short-term and customized workforce training; development of apprenticeship programs; and pathways for high school students in biotechnology. In addition, the collaborative would support biotechnology-related career development and employment services across both colleges and counties. 

“We’re excited for what the future holds for RTP Bio, and we’re excited to work together to prepare the future IT and biotech professionals,” said Scott Ralls, President of Wake Tech. 

The partnership is intended to serve anyone interested in biotechnology careers and companies looking for talent.

Learn more at www.durhamtech.edu/rtpbio

For more information, contact Desiree Towson, M.S., Communications and Public Relations Coordinator, at allisontowsond@durhamtech.edu.