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Introducing a New Expert Content Section: Careers!

Which field has more job/career opportunity?

Aquamarine57Aquamarine57 Registered User Posts: 1 New Member
I'm wondering if biochemistry and molecular biology or environmental studies/science would have more opportunity for jobs and career advancement. I'm interested in genetics (especially epigenetics), cell biology and how things work on a molecular level. I'm also really interested in climate change, the environment and atmospheric science. I've been toying with pursuing degrees in both these fields for months now. I'm tempted to double major in both theses fields, but was told that would be expensive and not provide me much benefit. My question is which field would have more job opportunity. Would I need to pursue a masters or PhD in order to work in research in both of these fields? What kind of jobs could I expect with just a bachelors degree? Thanks and bunch!

Replies to: Which field has more job/career opportunity?

  • katliamomkatliamom Registered User Posts: 12,172 Senior Member
    You would need a PhD... master's in the sciences are sort of useless, unless you want to teach. And competition for jobs would be tough with just a bachelor's -- you'd be up against a zillion pre-meds who did bio, or biochem and decided against med school (or just didn't get in.) There are science research jobs for those with just bachelor's degrees, but they're usually fairly low paid lab technician positions, and they're not easy to get (again, because of the competition from all those ex-premeds.)
  • juilletjuillet Super Moderator Posts: 12,355 Super Moderator
    I think it would depend on what you wanted to do, as far as which one has more job opportunities. If you did get a PhD and went into research - well, there are tons of biotech and pharmaceutical companies that would take a biochemist or molecular biologist, but there are also lots of outlets that would take an environmental scientist. I think there may be more directly related jobs on the master's level for an atmospheric scientist - meteorology, for example, can be done with a master's degree. Atmospheric/environmental science is also in demand at the BS/BA level at many government agencies (including military), at companies that have interests in environmental issues (think companies that create toxic byproducts in their manufacturing, or paper companies).

    But biochem and environmental science don't seem mutually exclusive! I would imagine an ES major would take lots of chemistry classes, and you could minor in biochemistry to explore it more fully.
  • chriswchrisw Registered User Posts: 1,585 Senior Member
    @OP, I am friendly with several people who are doing the type of genetics research you're talking about. All of them have Master's degrees (none have PhDs) and all of them are paid quite well, since they do research for pharma companies. I know one person who is a post-doctoral fellow doing research on climate change (so she has a PhD); she's paid decently but it is definitely a passion field for her, not one that will make her rich.
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