When QuVa Pharma started operations at its Northeast facility in July 2017 in Bloomsbury, officials wanted to make an impact on the regional community with jobs and other support efforts. It has done just that in six months. Arguably, the partnership between QuVa and Warren County Community College (WCCC) may have the most far-reaching impact for both as they have forged a relationship that will help dozens of individuals ultimately gain employment with the 503B pharmaceutical compounding company.
QuVa’s corporate headquarters is based in Sugar Land, TX, but in an effort to expand its operations in the Northeast the company purchased the Bloomsbury property, which is situated strategically near Routes 78 and 22 and allows for future expansion.
Currently QuVa employs about 50 employees, most of whom live within a half hour of the site. By the end of 2018 they expect to increase that figure to around 175 employees. Once it is fully operational in the Fall of 2019, with a second building being renovated, it is expected that there will be over 250 employees here. This is where WCCC comes into play. The College has been offering a Pharmacy Tech Certification training program for several years, which is a prerequisite for many of the job opportunities at QuVa. Working with WCCC to develop more local talent makes perfect sense.
“It’s really been a fantastic relationship,” said Mike Rutkowski, Vice President and General Manager of the Bloomsbury site. “We have a number of positions for which we will be hiring in the next year or two and WCCC’s course offerings puts those people right in the mix.”
The positions are varied, from Production Tech to Microbiologist.
“This is what the College is here for,” noted Dianne Czar, Program Coordinator WCCC Allied Health. “To be flexible and accommodate our community’s needs.”
WCCC offers the most expansive Allied Health program in the state, and as a result, is able to provide the healthcare industry in the area with a variety of employment options.
In addition to offering their Pharmacy Tech program on March 5th, this May WCCC is offering an advanced program in Pharmacy Compounding, specifically designed to meet the needs of QuVa. Many students will have the opportunity to participate in externships at QuVa, giving them an inside track right away.
Tammy Snyder, a graduate of WCCC’s Pharmacy Tech program, has been working at QuVa for the past three months. Originally she completed externships at Warren Hospital (now St. Luke’s Warren) and Hackettstown Regional Medical Center, eventually getting a job at Hunterdon Medical Center. When she learned about the opportunity at QuVa, she made the switch for a variety of reasons: more accommodating schedule, a more relaxed atmosphere, and better pay. “This was a much better opportunity for me,” said Snyder, who lives in Belvidere. At QuVa, she is a Production Technician.
Added Jessica Faucett, also a graduate of the WCCC program and who is a Production Technician as well, “QuVa allows me the ability to utilize my mathematical skills during formulation calculations. It also keeps my aseptic technique sharp, allows me to gain better insight on the rules and regulations of a 503B governed by the FDA, and keeps me abreast of high demand medications. It’s a breath of fresh air to be challenged on a daily basis and to know that what we make is directly benefiting patients.”
“Without a doubt, partnering with WCCC is one of the best things about our expansion to New Jersey,” stated Rutkowski. “They’ve made the transition much easier.”
Photo: L-R, Maija Amaro, WCCC Workforce and Industry Training Specialist, Dianne Czar, Program Coordinator WCCC Allied Health, Mike Rutkowski, Vice President and GM, Bloomsbury, and Michelle Hickey, QuVa Project Coordinator, Bloomsbury.