March 13, 2024

Nucleate and Biocom California: Advancing Biotech Entrepreneurship and Diversity

A Contributed Article by Nucleate
For the third consecutive year, Nucleate is pleased to continue its partnership with Biocom California, the advocate for the life science industry in California since 1995. This collaboration, initially launched with Nucleate San Diego in 2021, has significantly contributed to expanding Nucleate’s reach across California, including in Los Angeles and San Francisco.

As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, Nucleate focuses on providing free, open-access education to support academic trainees in becoming successful bio-entrepreneurs. Our partnership with Biocom California emphasizes our commitment to education, diversity, and community, positioning Nucleate as a leader in life science career development.

“While I was in grad school, Nucleate opened my eyes to brand new career avenues in biotech and entrepreneurship,” said Mackenzie Scurka, Nucleate’s Activator Program eco lead and program director at Climate Capital Bio Incubator. “The educational and networking opportunities provided through Nucleate directly led me to my current role in life science venture capital.

Central to Nucleate’s mission is the Activator Program, a six-month, equity-free program designed to support and empower life science entrepreneurs from all backgrounds while they embark on their venture creation journey. Its curriculum has served more than 300 life science teams that have gone on to form 78 companies and raise more than $310 million in funding.

Carter Palmer, San Diego’s 2023 Final Pitch Golden Fellowship winner and co-founder and CEO of Third Element, said Nucleate’s Activator Program was an amazing opportunity for his entire team. “It facilitated absolutely key advancements for our early-stage company, including pairing us with amazing mentors, opening the door to the San Diego startup ecosystem, and helping us refine our message and vision for growth,” he said. “Nucleate was key in helping us advance our efforts to develop therapeutics to control neuroinflammation.”

Nucleate is devoted to increasing diversity in biotech. We recognize the challenges of gender and racial inequality in the biotech field, a sector where only 25 percent of companies have female founders, and about 1 to 3 percent of biotech executives are minorities. At Nucleate, we are committed to supporting diverse talents in order to reduce these barriers. Our efforts in the Activator Program and broader initiatives reflect our dedication to creating a more inclusive and equitable biotech industry.

“Nucleate’s programming is made possible through our generous sponsors and industry advisors that support our open-access and free-to-all mission,” said Sofia Guerra, current Nucleate board member and vice president at Bessemer Venture Partners. “We are proud to be partnering with Biocom California to advance the state’s life science ecosystem and empower the next generation of biotech leaders.”

As we continue our partnership with Biocom California, Nucleate remains committed to nurturing a diverse generation of biotech leaders. We look forward to furthering our impact and fostering an environment where every aspiring bio-entrepreneur can succeed.