There are a wide range of science disciplines that contribute to a diverse set of career opportunities within this ﬁeld. There are diﬀerent ways in which your background and skills in science can contribute to the world of work:
- Private Industry: Scientists work at companies such as in Consumer Products, Cosmetics, Pharmaceuticals, Environmental Consulting, Health Care Providers, and Research Foundations.
- Education & Academia: Professors and teachers work in higher, secondary and primary education.
- Federal, State, or Local Government: Scientists contribute to work at The Food & Drug Administration, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Center for Disease Control, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, NASA, or the National Institutes of Health.
Finding an On Campus Research Position
There are many opportunities to assist faculty members with research on campus and at other universities. Many positions are not advertised anywhere; it’s up to you to ﬁnd a professor who would be open to taking on a student researcher. CCE’s tipsheet “Finding an Undergraduate Research Position” oﬀers helpful advice and resources.
Opportunities for Columbia students to work at the forefront of innovative science research include:
- Amgen Scholars Program
- Student Research Involvement Program
- Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships
- Earth Institute
- Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center
- Harlem Biospace
- Nevis Laboratories
- CC/SEAS, GS, and GSAS fellowships
- Research Experience for Undergraduates (at Columbia and other Universities)
- There are many listservs for undergraduate students to learn about research opportunities in the sciences. Join the Center for Student Advising’s Science Mailing list and Pre health listserv.
- LionSHARE: CCE’s database of internships and full time jobs for students and alumni. Previous employers have included: Rockefeller University, American Institute for Research, MIT Lincoln Lab, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, Heart Disease Research Foundation, Hospital for Special Surgery, and the Paciﬁc Northwest National Lab.
- CCE Career Fairs: CCE hosts a Fall Career Fair, Engineering Consortium Career Fair and Spring Career Fair each year. Attending employers included: Trinity Partners, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Regenron Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Stryker, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, NASA Langley Research Center, Brookhaven National Laboratory, NYU Langone Medical Center, Paciﬁc Northwest National Laboratory, Celgene, and Weill Cornell Medical College.
- Science, Technology, Engineering Program (STEP): STEP is one of CCE’s many internship programs that provide students with opportunities to connect with Columbia alumni and gain experience in science, technology and engineering.
- Career Exploration for Ph.D’s: A tipsheet on where to look for employment and how to use your training/skills in the job search in the science, technology, engineering and math disciplines.
- Vault & WetFeet Guides: Proﬁles industries, companies, and careers. Related resources include the Vault guide to Biotech and Wetfeet guide to Careers in Pharmaceuticals.
- Columbia Alumni: Read proﬁles and get advice from Columbia alumni working in the ﬁeld of science.
Listservs: There are many listservs for undergraduate students to learn about research opportunities in the sciences. Join the Center for Student Advising’s Science Mailing list and Pre health listserv.
Mentornet: Join to connect with a mentor in the STEM ﬁelds.
Student Clubs & Professional Associations:
- The Chandler Society of Columbia University: The Chandler Society serves as a tribute to the spirit of American chemist Charles Frederick Chandler, continuing the great tradition of bringing people together with Chemistry.
- Columbia Neuroscience Society: The Columbia Neuroscience Society aims to create a community among students with an interest in neuroscience.
- Columbia Science Review: The mission of the Columbia Science Review is to increase knowledge and awareness of science and technology in the Columbia community, promote scientiﬁc literacy at Columbia, and promote student activities within the sciences.
- Columbia Undergraduate Science Journal: Professional-level, open-access science journal that is committed to publishing manuscripts of the highest scholarship resulting from signiﬁcant scientiﬁc research or outstanding analysis.
- Society of Physics Students: Columbia University Chapter of the Society of Physics Students.
- New York Academy of Sciences: One of the oldest scientiﬁc societies, with a global reach.
- New York Association for Women in Science: Mission is to empower women to enter, remain, and advance in science careers both inside and outside academia.
- New York Biotechnology Association: Devoted to the development of biotechnology related industries and institutions in the state of New York.
- American Association for the Advancement of Science: Dedicated to advancing science around the world by serving as an educator, leader, spokesperson and professional association.
- American Chemical Society: Represents professionals at all degree levels and in all ﬁelds of chemistry and sciences that involve chemistry.
- American Institute of Biological Sciences: Builds community in support of researchers, educators, and scientists who understand the importance of sharing biological discovery and knowledge.
- American Physics Society: Advances and diﬀuses the knowledge of physics through its research journals, scientiﬁc meetings, and education, outreach, advocacy and international activities.
- National Academy of Sciences: Provides expert advice on some of the most pressing challenges facing the nation and world.
- Society for Neuroscience: Advancing the understanding of the brain and human nervous system.
Internship/Job Posting Websites
- Amherst College Summer Internships: List of summer undergraduate research opportunities.
- BioSpace: Online community for industry news and careers for life science professionals.
- Columbia’s Department of Biology: List of summer undergraduate research programs.
- HireBio: Biotechnology jobs, learning resources, and career tools.
- HireRx: Pharmaceutical jobs, learning resources, and career tools.
- MedZilla: Services for employers and professionals in biotechnology, pharmaceutical, healthcare and science.
- Organization of Biological Field Stations: Provide living libraries and outdoor laboratories for students, researchers, and the general public interested in the environment.
- Society for Neuroscience: Home to a growing range of career resources available through SfN.
- American Chemistry Society: Job listings in the chemistry ﬁeld.
- ChemJobs: A worldwide listing of chemical jobs.
- HireRx: Pharmaceutical jobs, learning resources, and career tools.
- Eco.org: A source for job candidates looking for green jobs.
- Environmental Health and Safety Careers: Jobs, talent acquisition and career information in the EH&S profession.
- GreenBiz: Jobs in renewable energy, clean tech, green building, sustainable businesses and more.
- Columbia’s Department of Biology: List of summer undergraduate research programs in Ecology.
- Green Corps: One year, full time, paid Field School for Environmental Organizing includes intensive classroom training, hands-on ﬁeld experience running urgent environmental campaigns, and career placement in positions with leading environmental groups.
- Nature Jobs: A job database sponsored by the journal Nature.
- American Physical Society: Find physics job listings.
- American Institute of Physics: Physics Today jobs.
- Institute of Physics: An overview of jobs in the ﬁeld.
- USAJobs and Making the Diﬀerence: Sources for federal jobs and internships.
- New Scientist Jobs: A job database sponsored by New Scientist magazine.
- Research Experience for Undergraduates: Work in the research programs at host institutions.
- ScienceCareers: A career resource for scientists sponsored by the AAAS.
- StemCompass - STEMCompass is a career learning and recruiting platform for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) students and employers.