‚Äč
Buchtel College of Arts & Sciences - Careers

Career Options for Biology Majors

  • Homect_img
  • Career Options for Biology Majors

TWO BROAD TRACKS OF INTEREST

Subjects related to health science where students study structure, function, health, and/or treatment of the human body (or animals through veterinary medicine).

Subjects pertaining to theoretical, experimental, or applied biology where students study structure, function, behavior, and/or distribution of other living organisms at either the microscopic, organismic, population, community, or ecosystem level and how to apply this knowledge. 

OR BIOLOGY IN COMBINATION . . .

Subjects where you can combine your biological knowledge with other professional training such as:

  • Law: Be an environmental advocate working to protect endangered species. Be a lawyer for a biotechnology company evaluating patents.
  • Business: Be a regulatory affairs manager for companies selling seeds, drugs, biologically-based products
  • Communications: Be a science journalist writing about scientific advancements for the layperson.
  • Politics: Be a policy analyst helping government officials develop science-based legislation. 

SUB-FIELDS of STUDY

Aquatic Biologist: Water plants and animals

Marine: Salt water organisms

Limnologist: Fresh water organisms

Biochemist: Chemical composition of living things

Microbiologist: Microsopic organisms

Medical Microbiologist: Relationship between organism and disease or effects of antibiotics

Physiologist: Life functions of plants and animals

Zoologist: Animal origins, behaviors, diseases, life processes

Ecologist: Organisms relations, their environments, and effects of influences such as population, size, temperature, etc.

Agricultural and Food Scientist: Safe production and supply of crops and animals

Botanist: Plants and their environment

 

EARNING HOW MUCH?

Occupational Outlook Handbook 2010-11- Biological scientist [biochemists/biophysicists] with a graduate degree earned about $82.3 in 2008.

2009 Salary Survey of the National Association of Colleges and Employers stated the approximate annual salary for a biological andlife science bachelor holder at $33.1k.

2009 Federal Government salaries for microbiologists, $97.2k; for ecologists, $84.2k; for physiologists, $109.3k; for geneticists, $99.7k; for zoologists, $116.9k; and for botanists, $72.2k.

 

IN AKRON AREA

Biologists study basic principles of plant/animal life and affects of varying environmental and physical conditions.

BIOLOGIST I

Requires bachelor’s degree and up to two years field experience or related area experience. Demands knowledge of commonly-used concepts, practices, procedures within a particular field. Little creativity. Works under supervisor and earns a median wage of $43.9.

BIOLOGIST II

Requires bachelor’s degree and 2-4 years field experience or experience in related area. Demands familiarity with standard concepts, practices, procedures within a particular field. Relies on limited experience and judgment to plan/accomplish goals. Perform a variety of tasks. Has a certain degree of creativity and latitude. Works under general supervision and earns a median wage of $52k.

BIOLOGIST III

Requires a graduate degree and at least five years of field experience or related area experience. Demands familiarity with variety of Field’s concepts, practices, procedures. Relies on experience/judgment to plan and accomplish goals. Performs a variety of complicated tasks using wide degree of creativity and latitude. Reports to supervisor or manager and earns a median wage of $63k.

(http://swz.salary.com) [March 2010]

 

WHAT TO DO! 

Research:

* Basic: Pure science motivated by the need to answer questions about how organisms function and evolve.

* Applied: Application of concepts driven by need to solve problems often of immediate concern to society, medicine or industry.

Teaching:

* Faculty: Teach in formal classroom setting / serve as mentors in research laboratory or extend into community or environment

* Community: Create educational exhibits for museums, zoos, aquaria; give public lectures or workshops; write science articles published in newspapers, magazines, books; produce educational software or multimedia applications; develop educational films and TV programs

Administration:

* Academe, Industry, Government: Complement biology knowledge with communication skills, business knowledge, information management and computer skills

 

WHERE TO DO IT!

Federal, State, local governments; pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, universities, research laboratories.

Teaching Institutions:

Colleges and universities, community and junior colleges, technical schools, high school

Industries involved with development/application of new products:

Agricultural products and pesticide production, biological testing, biotechnology, food industry, health-related consumer items, independent research laboratories, pharmaceutical sales and production

State agencies:

Agricultural extension services, resource protection authorities, forest services, health departments, natural resource conservation boards, water quality and water development boards

Federal Governmental agencies:

Department of Interior in Bureau of Land Management, Environmental Protection Agency, Fish and Wildlife Service, Food and Drug Administration, Geological Survey, National Institutes of Health, National Park Service, National Science Foundation, Dept. of Agriculture

Miscellaneous Employers:

Zoos and aquaria, environmental consulting firms, museums, theme parks, private foundations

 

WEB SITES OF INTEREST

The University of Akron

Akron, OH 44325
Phone: 330-972-7111
Contact us
Send mail & deliveries to UA
Text-Only