Why Oklahoma Biotech Firms Are Hiring in New England

  • Joe Wertz

kaibara / flickr

The growth of Oklahoma’s biotechnology sector might be outpacing the pool of potential employees.

Thomas Kupiec is the CEO of three biotech companies headquartered in the Oklahoma City metro area, which The Journal Record‘s Sarah Terry-Cobo reports have been in a “perpetual hiring phase.”

But when Kupiec travels to Boston next week to attend the big annual biotech conference, he won’t just be seeking out new clients — he’ll be looking for new employees to hire.

Why is that? (Hint: It’s not about education.)

Terry-Cobo reports:

“They have the training; our (state) schools do a great job at educating,” Kupiec said in a telephone interview. “But (a college education) doesn’t give the industrial experience. … They need the true, real-world experience.”

Kupiec often needs employees who have experience using specialized equipment — know how to work a liquid chromatography mass spectrometer? — and those workers tend to cluster around pharmaceutical companies headquartered on the coasts, he tells The Journal Record.

In recent years, Kupiec hired an employee from Connecticut.