The Life Sciences industry refers to all of the organizations and companies whose work is centered around research and development focused on living things (animals, plants, human beings.)  The Pharmaceuticals industry is often considered a  Life Science industry with its focus on the development, creation, and distribution of medications to aid the health of living things.  Biotechnology or Biotech is a subset of each of these.  The growing Biotech industry focuses on a few major areas including medical/healthcare, agricultural or food production and the environment through which living organisms are used or manipulated to create a useable product.

There are different access points for a career in these Life Sciences including both scientific and non-scientific.  A degree in engineering or life science is often required for the research and development opportunities while a business or humanities background could be a great springboard into the business development and support functions within the industry. 

Biomedical Engineering Job Search

While some large organizations may recruit in the Fall semester, many others will seek full-time hires on an “as needed” basis. The key is to start your search early so that you do not miss opportunities. Use resources like the professional associations listed below to apply to positions and seek out networking opportunities, attend CCE’s Engineering Career Fair and Engineering Industry Showcase, and pay attention to your departments’ emails and your LionSHARE saved searches. Most managerial and top research positions require a masters degree, and a doctorate is required to pursue a career in academia. California and Massachusetts have the largest number of biotechnology companies. Other states with a large number of biotechnology companies include North Carolina, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Georgia, New York, Texas, and Florida.

Columbia Resources

 

External Resources

PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS

INTERNSHIP/JOB BOARDS 

  • Navigate the Circuit: A career webpage by the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering
  • Pathways to Science: To find programs such as undergraduate summer research opportunities as well as resources and materials pertaining to recruitment, retention, and mentoring
  • American Academy for Advancement of Science: A resource list of AAAS career development programs
  • National Science Foundation REU Sites: The Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program supports active research participation by undergraduate students in any of the areas of research funded by the National Science Foundation
  • List of BME summer programs (research/internships)
  • BMES Job Board: Internship and job posting database from the Biomedical Engineering Society
  • EMBS Job Board: Internship and job posting database from the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society
  • Engineering Jobs – Biomedical: A very broad range of jobs specifically limited to biomedical engineering opportunities
  • Hum-molgen: A specialty site dedicated to collecting available career positions in bioscience and medicine
  • Research Gate: A network dedicated to science and research. Connect, collaborate and discover scientific publications, jobs, and conferences
  • Engineering Central: Lists engineering positions and resumes across all engineering disciplines

PROFESSIONAL JOURNALS 

Top Employers

  • Boston Scientific
  • Bristol-Myers Squibb
  • Celgene, Genentech
  • Genzyme
  • Johnson & Johnson
  • Kimberly Clark
  • Mayo Clinic
  • Medtronic
  • Merck
  • Colgate-Palmolive
  • Pfizer

The Columbia Biomedical Engineering Department and the Sloan Cornerstone Career Center host lists of other employers to explore. See what Columbia students have gone on to do with their degree with CCE’s What Can You Do With A Degree in Biomedical Engineering tipsheet. 

Chemical Engineering Job Search

While some large organizations may recruit in the Fall semester, many others will seek full-time hires on an “as needed” basis. The key is to start your search early so that you do not miss opportunities. Use resources like the professional associations listed below to apply to positions and seek out networking opportunities, attend CCE’s Engineering Career Fair and Engineering Industry Showcase, and pay attention to your departments’ emails and your LionSHARE saved searches. For some positions, an MS, an MBA, or a Ph.D. may be required. A Ph.D. may be essential for advancement in research, teaching, and administration. Typically, new recruits begin as trainees or process engineers. They often begin work under the supervision of seasoned engineers. Many participate in special training programs designed to orient them to company processes, procedures, policies, and products. This allows the company to determine where the new personnel may best fulfill their needs. After this training period, new employees often rotate positions to get an all-around experience in working for the company.

Columbia Resources

    External Resources

    PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS

    INTERNSHIP/JOB BOARDS  

    • Pathways to Science: To find programs such as undergraduate summer research opportunities as well as resources and materials pertaining to recruitment, retention, and mentoring
    • National Science Foundation REU Sites: The Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program supports active research participation by undergraduate students in any of the areas of research funded by the National Science Foundation
    • American Academy for Advancement of Science: A resource list of AAAS career development programs
    • Engineering Jobs – Chemical: This component of the EngineeringJobs.net site is catered specifically to jobs in the chemical engineering industry
    • ACECNY: A proactive coalition of more than 270 firms representing every discipline of engineering related to the built environment — civil, structural, mechanical, electrical, geotechnical — and affiliated companies. A listing of consulting engineering firms from across New York State. Use membership directory to identify local companies and check their job boards for postings
    • Research Gate: A network dedicated to science and research. Connect, collaborate and discover scientific publications, jobs, and conferences
    • Engineering Central: Lists engineering positions and resumes across all engineering disciplines
    • Engineer.net: A broad-scale engineering job-search engine that many companies use to find new talent

    PROFESSIONAL JOURNALS 

    Top Employers

    • Air Liquide
    • BASF
    • ConEd
    • Dow Chemical
    • DuPont
    • Exxon Mobil
    • Infineum
    • L’Oreal
    • Praxair
    • The Clorox Company
    • Unilever

    For more details on the work of Chemical Engineers, visit the chemical engineering pages of Occupational Outlook HandbookSloan Cornerstone Career Center and the Chemical Engineering department website. See what Columbia students have gone on to do with their degree with CCE’s What Can You Do With A Degree in Chemical Engineering tipsheet.