On November 14th Dacon and ABI-LAB broke ground for ABI-LAB2, an affordable accelerator and bio-incubator situated in Natick’s biotech hot spot. With the capacity to house 45 startups, the 4-story structure will contain build-to-suit dedicated laboratories ranging from 800-2,000SF entailing communal work spaces, individual work stations and access to shared high-tech equipment. Secretary Jay Ash was the keynote speaker in which he addressed Massachusetts’s high growth life sciences sector. To inaugurate the event, ABI-LAB created the ABI-LAB Fellows Grant to support students in the university’s STEM program pursuing life sciences careers. Dr. Margaret Carroll, Dean of Framingham State University’s STEM program and Dr. Javier Cevallos, President were present to receive the funds. “We are delighted to receive these funds which will assist two students with their university expenditures. With multiple programs – BS degrees in biology and biochemistry as well as a PSM degree in biotechnology and an MBA in biotechnology operations – we see continued student enrollment and talent demand. The ABI-LAB Fellows Grant will aid 2 rising star students with their academic expenses. Given MetroWest’s life sciences ecosystem expansion, the need to develop and retain talent will continue indefinitely. This ground breaking not only changes the business atmosphere but students’ lives as well”. Several of ABI-LAB’s residents and interns come from the university’s growing program.