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Mission: To propel the understanding and treatment of disease.
Best Places to Work: 2016 (#48)
Disease prediction is complicated. In a new Nature Communications study, researchers from the Broad, IBM Research, and Color find that a person?s genetic background influences the risk of familial hypercholesterolemia, breast cancer, and colorectal cancer in individuals carrying high-risk single-gene variants that predispose them to these diseases. The findings help explain why some genetically predisposed individuals do not develop disease, and suggest ways to more accurately interpret patients? genetic risk of disease?eventually, guiding more informed genetic counseling in clinical practice.
?My ultimate career goal is to impact the world with my code.? In a #WhyIScience Q&A, Marianie Simeon, a computer scientist with the Data Sciences Platform, talks about her passion for coding, STEM education, and advocacy for the Black community at Broad.
Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard was launched in 2004 to improve human health by using genomics to advance our understanding of the biology and treatment of human disease, and to help lay the groundwork for a new generation of therapies.
The institute was founded to seize the opportunity that arose from the Human Genome Project the international effort that successfully deciphered the entire human genetic code. Despite that accomplishment, scientists knew they still lacked a clear understanding of the genetic basis of disease, and how to translate that understanding into more effective prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.
To reach these goals, it was clear that a new type of research institution had to be created. The traditional academic model of individual laboratories working within their specific disciplines was not designed to meet the emerging challenges of biomedicine. To gain a comprehensive view of the human genome and biological systems, they instead had to work in a highly integrated fashion.
That meant working in nimble teams that combined biology, chemistry, mathematics, computation, and engineering with medical science and clinical research. It also meant working at a scale usually seen in industry, with access to world-class infrastructure. At the same time, this institution had to foster an atmosphere of creativity, risk-taking, and open sharing of data and research. Finally, this new model needed to seek collaborations beyond its borders.
The Eli & Edythe Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard evolved from a decade of informal and successful research collaborations among scientists in the MIT and Harvard communities.
In 1990, the Whitehead Institute/MIT Center for Genome Research (WICGR) was founded, and it soon became an international leader in the field of genomics and a flagship of the Human Genome Project. As early as 1995, WICGR scientists recognized the need to bring the power of genomics to the understanding of human disease. It launched pilot projects in genomic medicine, forming an unofficial collaborative network among scientists from across MIT and Harvard who pioneered new approaches to cancer and human genetics.
In parallel, Harvard Medical School-based scientists established the Institute of Chemistry and Cell Biology (ICCB) in 1998, to facilitate the pursuit of chemical genetics as an academic discipline and a tool to further understand human biology and disease. In 2002, the ICCB was awarded an Initiative for Chemical Genetics (ICG) grant from the National Cancer Institute, and its successful Investigator-Initiated Screening Program facilitated small molecule screening projects for more than 80 research groups worldwide.
These projects demonstrated the power of enabling scientists to collaborate to tackle the major challenges in molecular medicine. It was clear that a new type of formal organization was required — open, collaborative, interdisciplinary, and able to organize projects at any scale. In addition, it was important that the complementary expertise of the genomic scientists and the chemical biologists across MIT and Harvard be brought together in one place to drive the transformation of medicine with molecular knowledge.
Discussions in 2002-2003 among Eli and Edythe Broad, MIT, Harvard and its affiliated hospitals, and the Whitehead Institute shaped the vision for this new institute. The extraordinary generosity of Eli and Edythe Broad, through their founding gift of $100 million (later doubled to $200 million) made it possible to formally announce the new institute in June 2003 and to launch it in May 2004. Less than four years after its launch, the Broads gave an unprecedented gift of $400 million in September 2008 to permanently endow the institute, providing long-term sustainability for its unique model of collaborative, inter-institutional research. In 2013, they committed an additional $100 million to empower Broad scientists to pioneer new research directions—a vital step in tackling the biomedical challenges of tomorrow.
Broad Institute is an “experiment” in this new way of doing science. It spans some of Boston’s leading institutions (Harvard, MIT, and Harvard-affiliated hospitals) and scientific disciplines (biology, chemistry, medicine, computer science, and engineering). Today, the Broad community includes more than three thousand scientists, committed to advancing research in areas including infectious disease, cancer, psychiatric research, and cardiovascular disease.
Embedded in this new approach to doing science, are our values including:
The Broad Institute is pioneering a new model of collaborative biomedical science to transform biology and medicine. To do that, we have created a unique community of amazing, creative people — “Broadies” — each with a passion for pushing scientific frontiers.
Broadies have a diverse collection of talents, expertise, and backgrounds, creating a rich collaborative environment for solving intractable scientific problems.
We are always looking for new team members to help us tackle important problems at the cutting edge of science. If ours is a community you would want to be a part of, then search our Career Center.
The Broad Institute provides equal opportunity in employment for all qualified persons and prohibits discrimination in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, pregnancy, marital status, national origin or ancestry, disability, veteran status, military service, age, sexual orientation, genetic information, or gender identity.
I have been working at The Broad Institute full-time (More than a year)
Very generous benefits and time off, casual dress code, friendly culture, encourages growth
Cambridge city is tough to get into. Always traffic, very expensive parking and food, highly congested area
The first interview was a video interview to assess my interest and for them to explain the position. We then went through my resume and they asked about my experience. Pretty standard.
Pay Equality Pledge
Committed to paying equitably for equal work & experience
Career Advancement Program
Helping employees "upskill" into higher-paying positions
Has programs that support a diverse and inclusive workforce
Pledge to Thrive
Taking steps to prioritize employee well-being
First Job Programs
Maintain entry-level hiring and career development programs to give people career starts