Learn About Careers in Life Sciences

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Wellesley Career Education

A career in the life sciences can include a broad range of companies, organizations, and foundations concerned with the study of living organisms, including biological sciences, botany, zoology, microbiology, physiology, biochemistry, and a number of related subjects. Employers may include biotechnology & pharmaceutical companies, academic institutions, healthcare organizations, foundations, and federal agencies. Most of the information on this page concerns non-patient facing options but there are opportunities to create career paths that merge patient and non-patient settings.

“After grad school, I jumped straight into curriculum development as a Middle Grades Editor at Pearson Education, then left for a startup making video games that taught science, and finally ended up at the Smithsonian Science Education Center as a curriculum developer (my dream gig!).”

Curriculum Design

Hayley
Hayley Meredith McIlvaine

Career paths in curriculum design are wide-ranging, beginning with the variety of terms and job titles you will hear and levels of preparation required (a Bachelor’s degree is required, often a master’s is preferred--or depth of knowledge in the subject). There is often confusion within the occupation surrounding titles. Typically, the role involves development and evaluation of curricular and training materials.

Library Science

Hayley
Hayley Meredith McIlvaine

Wherever there’s a need for information, there’s a need for a librarian. Libraries have been empowering people by offering resources, services and training to expand their knowledge for thousands of years. According to the American Library Association career resource page there are approximately 400,000 librarians and library workers who bring opportunity every day to the communities they serve.

Careers in the Military and Law Enforcement

Nicole
Nicole D. Park

The majority of law enforcement jobs are US government positions at the federal and state level and therefore are of interest to students interested in public service. The information below focuses on the maintenance of public order and enforcing the law. Please also refer to the “Government” resource page for more information about public service careers outside of military and physical law enforcement.

Study Abroad: Government, International Affairs, Law, & Public Policy Careers

Nicole
Nicole D. Park

Students interested in careers in government, law, international affairs, and public policy are encouraged to focus on skill development and experience. This is especially important as employers, and graduate programs in this space continue to look for commitment to understanding these industries.  Below please find suggested study abroad experiences that help develop specific skills and experiences to help be competitive in these industries.

Science Research

Alexis Trench
Alexis Trench

Participating in research experiences as an undergraduate is an excellent way to add depth to your science understanding and actively engage with what you are learning in the classroom. By doing so, you further develop your laboratory, analytical, and problem-solving skills, and you start to build your network with faculty members. Research experiences are valuable components to your resume, and they can make you more competitive for both graduate school and industry opportunities.

 

“I hear from the parents of Dynamo Girls whose daughters are on the cusp of taking great risks: at the top of mountains, at the sides of a pool, in the wings before going on stage, and the parents say to them—‘You can do this. You are a Dynamo Girl.’”

Fulbright Program (rising seniors & graduates)

Kate Dailinger
Kate Dailinger

Supports a year (or occasionally more) of study or research abroad in any discipline, or year-long English teaching assistantships (ETAs) abroad in programs designed by the host countries. Eligible are graduating seniors and graduates who are US citizens. Campus application deadline for Wellesley students and graduates typically in August.

“In the past year I’ve spent a lot of time thinking, talking, and journaling about my career, values, and interests. The courage to see if different doors would open for me, to reach out to people and ask for their time and wisdom, was sometimes hard to come by, but my curiosity pushed me to do things that were slightly uncomfortable, and the results were worth it.”

“Seeing young girls excited about STEM has been really meaningful and encourages me to continue improving Robogals and increasing our reach to impact more girls.”

“Right away, we met amazing, enthusiastic teachers who were ready to jump in to help us with our project.”

Jan 16, 2023

NIH Bioethics Post-Baccalaureate Fellowships - direct application deadline

Eligible: applicants for the post-baccalaureate fellowship must have an undergraduate or master’s degree completed no more than 3 years prior to the start date of the fellowship for a bachelor’s and no more than 6 months prior for a master’s. Only U.S. citizens or U.S. Legal Permanent Residents are eligible for post-baccalaureate fellowships. These fellowships are ideal for students interested in eventually pursuing an MD, JD, PhD, or other graduate degree.

Research/Gradschool, Postgraduate

The NIH Department of Bioethics welcomes applications for fully funded two-year postbaccalaureate research fellowships. Fellows are central to the activities and intellectual life of our interdisciplinary department. They study ethical issues related to biomedical research, clinical practice, genetics, biotechnology, public health, health policy, and more. They conduct mentored theoretical and empirical research on a range of bioethical fields. For a typical fellow, this research yields multiple first-authored publications in premier academic journals. In addition to research and writing,...

Feb 1, 2023

Amgen Scholars - application deadline

Eligible: programs in Asia are open to citizens of any country, and the program in Canada is for Canadian students/residents—see website for details. Applicants for the U.S. programs must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents and currently enrolled sophomores, juniors, or December ’22 grads who are considering a PhD or MD/PhD in a STEM field.

Research/Gradschool, International Student, Undergraduate

The Amgen Scholars Program is back for summer 2023! See their website for updated information.

The Amgen Scholars Program offers funded summer science and biotech research experience at host institutions across the US (including Columbia, Harvard, the NIH, Stanford, UC Berkeley, UCLA, UCSF, and Washington University in St Louis--as well as CalTech--for US students and permanent residents), as well as in Asia (for students from any country) and in Canada (for Canadian students).

Questions?  Any prospective...

Feb 21, 2023

Legacy Award of the Victims of Pan Am Flight 103 - direct application deadline

Current seniors and graduates of U.S. colleges and universities who are planning careers in areas related to national security and terrorism prevention

Research/Gradschool, Postgraduate

The Legacy Award of the Victims of Pan Am Flight 103, Inc. will support students pursuing advanced degrees in areas of study related to improved national security and terrorism prevention as they prepare for careers focused on keeping citizens safe from the threats of terrorism and preventing the deaths of innocent men, women, and children.

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