Year in Review 2021

2021

As we continued to navigate uncharted waters, we had a year full of growth and momentum.

Join us for a look back at some 2021 highlights.

ACADEMY HOLDS MOCK INTERVIEWS FOR CLASS OF 2021

January 2021

To help prepare the students for their upcoming internship interviews, the Academy hosts a half-day ‘clinic’ of mock interviews with scientists from companies including Abbvie, New England BioLabs, North Shore Innoventures, Qiagen, Recruitomics Biotalent, and Synlogic -- all generously donating thier time.

CONSTRUCTION BEGINS ON NEW BIOMANUFACTURING LEARNING ENVIRONMENT

February 2021

Ready, set, go! Construction begins on the new biomanufacturing learning environment, made possible by a $940K Workforce Skills Capital grant from Governor Baker, together with $600K in contributions from industry and private philanthropy. The addition of the lab will double the size of the Academy, in both square footage and students served.

GMGI GROWS BY THREE

January - April 2021

The GMGI team grows by three early in the year with the additions of: Development Director Logan Walsh, Biomanufacturing Lead Teacher Stephen Anderson, PhD, and Research Scientist Shelly Trigg, PhD.

TIM O’DONNELL PRESENTS GENOMICS TO ELEMENTARY STUDENTS

May 2021

Never one to turn down a challenge, GMGI Senior Research Associate Tim O'Donnell presents the basics of genomics to a group of 3rd, 4th and 5th graders via Zoom.

WINTER SEASON OF SCIENCE HOUR WRAPS

May 2021

The GMGI Science Hour wraps its third full season after wonderful presentations from researchers at the top of their fields, including: Dr. Vincent Pieribone of OceanX; Bill Fenical, the grandfather of marine genomics, from Scripps Institution of Oceanography; and venom scientist Dr. Mande Holford.

ACADEMY OFFERS VIRTUAL INFO SESSION

May 2021

With the pandemic still preventing in-person events, the Academy hosts a virtual information session for students interested in joining the class of 2021.

GMGI AWARDED $100K CUMMINGS GRANT

May 2021

GMGI is named a Cummings Grant recipient by Cummings Properties. This will allow us to expand our science community initiatives, helping to catalyze the regional economy by bringing meaningful science to Cape Ann. The grant will support our annual Science Forum, our entrepreneur-in-residence program, and a new Biomanufacturing Education and Workforce Development conference.

ACADEMY GRADUATES FIFTH CLASS

June 2021

Congratulations! Members of the Class of 2021 graduate in an outdoor ceremony at Maritime Gloucester, with a moving keynote address by State Representative Ann-Margaret Ferrante.

INTERNS JOIN GMGI FOR THE SUMMER

June 2021

Ansharah Khan, Kilee Davis and Merry Moore all join GMGI for the summer as interns, working with Senior Research Associate Jennifer Polinski on marine genomic projects

CRACKING THE LOBSTER GENOME

June 2021

After years of hard work, a team of researchers led by GMGI announce the successful sequencing of the American lobster genome. A feat previously seen as ‘too challenging’ due to the crustaceans’ complex, highly repetitive genomes, this work is now complete, offering the scientific community a fresh, new way to study everyone’s favorite crustacean.

GMGI JOINS SAMPLING CRUISE

July 2021

GMGI Senior Research Associate Jennifer Polinski joins a team of scientists from NOAA and USGS on a sampling cruise out to Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary. They collect sediment, surface water, and bottom water from 40 sites, which GMGI will use to assess the biodiversity of the bank via environmental DNA (eDNA).

MATT AND CHE JOIN OCEANX YOUNG EXPLORERS PROGRAM

July 2021

As part of OceanX’s new Young Explorers Program, GMGI Senior Scientist Matt Harke, PhD and Teaching Assistant Che Gardiner climb aboard OceanX’s marine research and media vessel OceanXplorer as instructors, helping to provide college students the opportunity to learn about and explore the world’s vast oceans.

GMGI HOSTS STUDENTS FROM ROXBURY FOR SPECIAL SUMMERSTEM WEEK

August 2021

GMGI has the pleasure of hosting a group of students from Roxbury to participate in our SummerSTEM program. The week-long program is capped by a celebration at neighboring Maritime Gloucester with 45 students from elementary grades through high school attending to experience seawater touch tanks and take a cruise on the Schooner Ardelle.

NEW GENETIC TOOLS DEVELOPED TO UNDERSTAND ATLANTIC COD POPULATIONS IN GULF OF MAINE

August 2021

GMGI Senior Research Associate Tim O’Donnell’s study on Atlantic cod populations gets published in Ecology and Evolution. This new research utilizes previous GMGI studies and builds on them with additional years’ worth of data and updated techniques. By sequencing the genome of over 200 cod samples, Tim and his collaborators develop a genetic tool to assist in differentiating between spring and winter-spawning individuals in the western Gulf of Maine.

TEAM AT 417 MAIN GROWS

August 2021

Recent Academy graduate Lizzie Kozachek joins the GMGI team as a part-time lab technician and Maggie See comes to 417 Main as the newest member of the development team.

GMGI AND ACADEMY CUT THE RIBBON ON NEW BIOMANUFACTURING LEARNING ENVIORNMENT

September 2021

Governor Charlie Baker, Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito, Representative Ann-Margaret Ferrante, and others join GMGI staff to celebrate the ribbon cutting of the Academy’s new, state-of-the-art biomanufacturing learning lab. The new space was made possible by a generous Workforce Skills Capital grant from the Baker administration, as well as contributions from industry and private philanthropy.

ON THE WATER WITH DMF

September 2021

GMGI Senior Research Associate Tim O’Donnell spends the day on the water with the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries -- visiting several locations throughout the Gulf of Maine -- to collect samples for use in a future sequencing project to analyze haddock diet composition.

NEW SEASON OF GMGI SCIENCE HOUR BEGINS

September 2021

And we’re back! GMGI kicks off its FOURTH GMGI Science Hour season with a talk by Dr. Steve Palumbi on the importance of coral preservation.

INTRODUCING THE CLASS OF 2022!

September 2021

In early September, the Academy’s 6th cohort begins their 10-month journey into biotech and the life sciences with eager anticipation.

GMGI NAMED A FINALIST FOR MASSECON AWARD

October 2021

Based on a commitment to building a workforce to support the area’s marine and life sciences industry, GMGI is selected as one of 14 finalists for the 2021 Team Massachusetts Economic Impact Awards, honoring companies from across the Commonwealth for job growth, investment, expansion, community engagement, equity, diversity and inclusion

LIFE SCIENCE MENTORS MEET UP WITH STUDENTS AT ACADEMY

November 2021

Members of the Class of 2022 meet with their industry mentors, preparing for a year of support through the program and beyond. Each year, industry professionals provide support to students not only during their 10-month training experience at the Academy, but through internships and job applications as they launch their full-time careers in the industry.

GMGI HOSTS INAUGURAL EDUCATION AND WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT CONFERENCE

November 2021

GMGI hosts its first annual Education and Workforce Development conference. The event, sponsored by the Cummings Foundation, brings together thought leaders from across the state to address the critical workforce gap facing the Commonwealth’s life sciences industry.

WRAPPING UP THE YEAR WITH THREE NEW STAFF

November 2021

GMGI rounds out the year with three new additions to the team: Research Associate Jessica Boulton; Teaching Assistant and Laboratory Technician Sadie Salazar; and Research Assoiate Carly MCall.

GMGI RECEIVES FINANCIAL SUPPORT TO INCREASE ACCESS TO STEM CAREERS

December 2021

GMGI is awarded two generous grants of $25K each from The Van Otterloo Family Foundation and Mass Biomedical Initiatives to support the Academy operations and increase access to the vibrant STEM fields in the Commonwealth. The funding will enable extended outreach, innovations in summer STEM programming, and new opportunities for middle and high school students to access our biomanufacturing learning environment.