Biotechnology jobs require the application of genetic and other scientific technologies in the development of medicines, foods, and other resources. The field combines the knowledge of science with the artistic sense and creates solutions to pressing issues of society. Many jobs at this level require extensive training and continuing education to keep abreast of new medical practices, regulations, and ethical concerns in the field. The employment outlook for this field is expected to steadily grow as medical researchers learn more about the usefulness of genetic engineering in the treatment of disease.
Courses in molecular biology and microbiology are often required for entry level positions in biotechnology jobs, as well as advanced degrees in such fields as biology or genetics. Courses in chemistry and physics may also be required for some positions. In addition to their general research positions, biotechnology professionals may find employment as managers of research facilities or even as administrators of companies that utilize genetic technologies. A master’s degree in any of the sciences can help an individual to advance into a career in biotechnology. Depending on the particular program, graduate studies may also provide opportunities to gain a job with pharmaceutical companies.
To advance from an undergraduate degree to a career in biotechnology, individuals may find work as staff members or consultants to research pharmaceutical companies. They may also work as independent consultants helping pharmaceutical companies improve the production of drugs and other products. Those looking for full-time positions may find employment as biotechnology laboratory workers, working with genetic samples in bioreactors. Some biotechnology professionals may find employment as laboratory technicians or diagnostic medical statistician positions, performing tasks such as counting cells, analyzing data, or performing specific tests that help determine the strength and purity of a sample of a patient’s blood.