Biotechnology Jobs Simplified

Biotechnology jobs can be found in virtually any work setting, such as with hospitals, government agencies, research facilities, food-manufacturing firms and pharmaceutical laboratories. Most biotechnicians operate in a laboratory setting, performing tasks that involve manipulating subatomic systems within microorganisms. While a PhD is almost mandatory, there are certain facilities which allow those with only a Masters degree to work under the supervision of a more experienced individual, often while pursuing their doctorate degree.

Necessary Degrees

Individuals qualified to do such work will normally have to have a PhD in at least one of these areas: organic chemistry, biology, animal and plant science, microbiology and other life science disciplines. However, a few research laboratories may employ those with a Master's degree who can then work with a more experienced biotechnician. If you are interested in obtaining one of the many biotechnology jobs available, be prepared to spend at least six to seven years attending university courses geared towards biology, chemistry and genetics, in addition to participating in intense internships at various laboratories.

Memorize That Periodic Table

Biotechnology jobs are focused on chemical interactions and the maneuvering of chemical structures to enhance pharmaceuticals, genetics, or agricultural dynamics. Opportunities for those specializing in chemistry are constantly being created in the biotechnology field. Having a background heavy in chemistry courses is a must for these jobs. For example, as a chemical engineer working in a field of biotechnology, you could be developing such things as polymers, drugs, fertilizers and petrochemicals, just to name a few, for which you must have the proper educational background.

The Stuff of Science Fiction

In biotechnology, cloning refers to a method utilized to duplicate DNA fragments and cells in order to create populations of individuals which are genetically identical or improved in some manner over the original. Biotechnology jobs involving cloning are highly specialized and usually affect agricultural processes, such as seed cloning, in order to experiment with ways to enhance crop productivity. However, the practices of animal and organ cloning have been advancing rapidly in the past two decades, with the famous cloned sheep Dolly making her appearance nearly twenty years ago.

Biotech Companies

Over one hundred companies which are specifically considered to be biotechnology firms exist today. Most are based in the United States, with a few in Sweden, Germany and Canada. The biggest company, Amgen, is located in California and employs over 20,000 biotechnicians who specialize in creating pharmaceuticals, such as Sensipar and Enbrel. Genentech Engineering Technology is the second largest U.S. biotech company, which houses over 10,000 biotechnology jobs. Genetech primarily conducts research in oncology, infectious diseases and immunology and also has significant numbers of scientific positions.

Where to Search for Biotechnology Jobs

After acquiring a master's or doctoral degree, the biotechnician will find biotechnology jobs plentiful, but most of these jobs require specific individuals who are skilled in specific areas. Resumes which reflect an extensive academic career as well as several internships and details of the project pursued during the internship will help the new graduate receive interviews and offers of employment. Internet sites such as Indeed, Yahoo Jobs and Monster will regularly post jobs seeking biotechnicians. In addition, many universities offer job placement assistance following graduation, often continuing post-graduate work begun in the university's laboratories.

The outlook for biotechnology jobs continues to grow as insights and inventions are always emerging in the fields of genetics, cloning and pharmaceuticals, among others. As a fascinating and satisfying career choice, biotechnology offers the interested individual opportunities to make a difference in the world while using the knowledge and skills acquired during long years of education and work.